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(16-Oct-2008 at 15:54)


WoW - Unplayable ?

Well - clearly WoW is not unplayable given that it is one huge cash machine for Blizzard, but a provocative title is always fun.

A few weeks ago, I was looking for another MMO recently and thought I might as well give WoW a try. After a lengthy download & install I fired it up and with some friends of mine started up some new toons. On the character generation screen couldn't believe how silly the characters looked (I mean those ears on the night elf ??) - and quite why all the females felt the need to show most of their bits off. Sure - it is no where near as bad as requiem (won't link since is as close to porn as can be) but the female characters generation screen instantly puts WoW in young teenage boy fantasy land.

Since I spent ages downloading the client I thought I would create an alt of at least three of both the light & dark side. We wanted to meet up but found this to impractical if we played different races. Since I've always got into crafting I began with a gnome (since I seem to recall something in their description that would give them an advantage) and convinced my friends to start with that too. We spent the first 5 mins pissing ourselves laughing at the absurdity of it all. Games need to engage some sort of empathy/connection with the main person - in this case our gnomes - but we could not see how you could possibly make an connection. The ridiclous beards and squat 'cuteness' pushed any possibilty of taking the game seriously instantly. Still - we had spent ages setting this up so we started the tutorial quests and after making a couple of levels fighting the most cartoonish monsters I have ever seen this side of the year 2000 in computer games, we felt we had given it a fair chance.

Sure I know it's based on Warcraft 3 which I quite like, but the landscape & sprites were just awful in detail & convincingness (is that a word ?). Aside from having any possibility of creating a connection with our toon, the things we were supposed to fight looked so unthreatening we could not take it seriously.

So we gave night elves a chance and spent quite a while laughing at the females 'outfits'. I mean what new adventurer really goes out without decent clothing - let alone apparently trying to use their bits to seduce their way to the goal. Still we gave this one a few levels chance. I played a healer this time and out of curiosty decided to run as far as I could from the starting point around various beasties. Eventuly I died and found that I could make my spirit get back to my corpse and then carry on. Made it seem like dying has no real consequences since my spirit didn't seem to be able to be stopped by anything.... so what was the point ? I could make my toon go on & on way past their gear & lvl should allow and just keep sending my spirit back to the corpse to wake up again. No penalty for failure.

We then went to try some other races and nothing really grabbed us. So after all this wall o' text the reason for the thread is what about WoW makes you play/continue to play ? The graphics are just plain awful.. I mean other MMO's we tried we didn't get on with for one reason or another, but we took screenshots and use them as background pictures. I can't ever invisage doing that with WoW. The characters, both player & npc appeared to be drawn for a kids TV program with the exception of the females which seemed to be designed for teenage boys fantasies. The quests - whilst I appriciate were the tutorial ones - had no depth to them, no sense of you having any real impact in the world. It's not even as there was any freedom in your choices in the early stages - you had extreamly limited options in choices of what to do.

So clearly we were missing something when our couple of hour foray in to the WoW ended since so many people play & the huge profit Blizzard gets from it. Please explain it to me, 'cos try as I might I am at a loss.

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
#1  
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(16-Oct-2008 at 16:38)


Bear in mind the game was created a few years back, so it's going to be out-dated image wise.

What makes the game, imo, isn't so much the graphics but rather the community and gameplay. When I say the game really starts at level 70, I mean it. It might seem a bit dull getting to that stage, but that's where all the focus really is now, 70 gameplay and beyond. The raids, the organisation, the teamwork. I think that's where it reaps all the success. As a lvl 1 or 2 toon you obviously won't have that environment, so all you can really rate the game on is graphics, and to that end WoW is already surpassed.

........Why does the thin grey strand......Ah, you will understand;.......................I should find, for a reprimand
.......Floating up from the forgotten......When I carried my mother downstairs,.....To my gaiety, a few long grey hairs
......Cigarette between my fingers,......A few times only, at the beginning..........On the breast of my coat; and one by one
.....Why does it trouble me?.............Of her soft-foot malady,.......................I watched them float up the dark chimney.
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(16-Oct-2008 at 16:46)


What keeps me playing is that it's fun.

The grpahics are below state-of-the-art because Blizzard wants as mnay people as possible to play the game. Don't think any of their games have ever been considered beatiful by the standard of the time when they were released.

When you leve up you'll realise that the penelty of dying is pretty severe. repair costs are a bitch. And whty would you just run around the world? Maybe we think different things are funny, but just running from Ironforge to Tanaris doesn't sound like an awesome night. So yes you can run to let's say Eastern Plague Lands with your lvl 1 character but once there you can't do anything... so why do it? You won't find anything there that will make your character better so you can't "cheat" by running and dying so there's no reason to do so.

Seems to me your biggest beef is with character design (which I agree is juvenile and well feels so 90's honestly (might be because I was "young" then)) and graphics, and if you keep playing I think you'll stop thinking about both those by the time you ding 20.

Backa backa mother.....
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(16-Oct-2008 at 17:58)


Re: WoW - Unplayable ?

Please don't think I am bashing WoW as a whole - clearly it is loved by millions around the world, this was just my & some friends experience and the resultant questions from our trial.

Camaraderie is certainly something I can understand, however that is something available in MMO's going back to even text based games. Certainly in the best Utopia kd's I was in I felt a sense of group achievement. I had heard it was all about end game raiding which is a real disincentive as I am sure you can imagine. Don't know how many hours it takes to get to lvl70 but I suspect it is a LOT. Is it really such a grind to find some fun ?

With regards the graphics, it's not that they are dated - it's that they are poor (at least to my eyes - beauty/beholder and all that). Dated is no problem for me, I still dig out my old games and revisit old 'glories'- hell I was playing Master Of Orion 2 over the weekend (circa 1996). It's that they are so childish to the point of absurdity. For example the first quest I had to do was to kill 5/6 ish wolves - fine, gotta learn combat somewhere right ? But when my gnome looks like it could be squished by small animal walking over it and the wolf apparently came fresh from a Disney cartoon with the landscape stolen right from a pixar film - I can't help but find it poor. There was no imersement, no suspense of disbelief, no sense of capture & drawing you in. In fact the opposite is true - it repulsed me by it childishness. Whereas if I play Deus Ex (circa 2000) that uses the first unreal engine (circa 1998) I can be drawn in to the story and look past the simple, pixilated images since they are at least not modelled on something out of a cartoon.

The quests you are sent on are of no importance to anyone, the npc's are flat & dimensionless, the sense that you are killing 5/6 wolves for the sake of it is overwhelming. Is anyone safer ? Is anyone warmer from their hides ? Apparently not since you can still see hordes of wolves wandering close in the distance and nothing changes. Everquest did the same and for me at least suffered in the same way. If you compare this to say Utopia, your first attack can be important, in EVE a day old newbie can tackle the 5 year old character so that others can kill him, in Lotro the early quests are to save a town for one area and stop a war in another - any good game gets you involved in something big from the outset. Whereas with WoW, there didn't seem to be anything to get your attention. You don't expect to see individual blades of grass on a 5+ year old engine, but you do expect them to be so cartoonish. Could Max Payne had the same appeal if all the mobsters & buildings look like they are extracted from the same style of 'Finding Nemo' ?

That Blizzard wants as many people to play as possible is course desirable to all concerned being a MMO, but the number of machines that struggle with a game this old has got to be small - no update seems inexcusable. Updating would be difficult ? Sure - but EVE Online, also launched in 2003 did it last year and give the option to the user of using either set of graphics, this with a fraction of the userbase & thus revenue. But again - I can look past dated - not the sheer sillyness of it.

So to reiterate, it's the lack of immersement that was the issue for us. The lack of any depth to your character (which is common amongst most games sadly) but also lack of a sense of danger for your character as you are fighting monsters on loan from Disney. How do you look past that ? Really cannot get my head around it. What draws you to your toons ? When you go solo what immerses you ?

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
#4  
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(16-Oct-2008 at 22:02)


Yea the graphics are disappointing as far as character design though there are areas I thought were very well done such as winterspring and there are others that make you want to kill your self just for running through them

I think the purpose for the design as a whole was to make it less violent looking to get younger players which sucks for the mature players but whatever

As far as the "game doesnt start till 70" argument is old, for me at least. Yeah some of the quest getting there will frustrate you. Some of the story lines can be ridiculous and sometimes border on the insane, but there are quests that you will enjoy from a story stand point and if its story you want there are plenty of quest lines that will entertain you. Just not starting out that much.
By far the best story I came across I got around lvl 50 or so however there are good stories all levels, just have to find them.

My biggest complaint comes from everyone saying the game doesnt start till 70. For me the game ended at 70 when I found out that all these people were talking about was raiding. Sure its fun and you can get some cool gear but honestly I play MMORPGs for the story lines ... raiding is little more than FPS IMO.

but thats me, each person has their own view about the game. The quests do get better, story wise, but even then you will get frustrated when you kill something for a tooth or paw and find out that the big cat you just killed doesnt have either.

If you want some good story play Undead, some of the best with that race.

"When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth"
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EWE-tah
#5  
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(16-Oct-2008 at 22:41)


I actually heard that the deathknight in the upcoming expansion has some sort of deeper storyline and meaning to it. Can't confirm it as I haven't got a beta key, but I read that some effort was put into the "feel" and "atmosphere" of the new class.

........Why does the thin grey strand......Ah, you will understand;.......................I should find, for a reprimand
.......Floating up from the forgotten......When I carried my mother downstairs,.....To my gaiety, a few long grey hairs
......Cigarette between my fingers,......A few times only, at the beginning..........On the breast of my coat; and one by one
.....Why does it trouble me?.............Of her soft-foot malady,.......................I watched them float up the dark chimney.
#6  
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(Posted as DeRnhelm)
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(17-Oct-2008 at 03:08)


Seems we disagree pretty much! If there is one thing I like about WoW, it's the smooth, cartoon-like graphics. Just look at it! It's like a child's bum!

When I tried Age of Conan I just got upset by the amount of detail they had put into the landscape, rough and sharp edges made me unfocused and didn't really appeal to the eye. I guess I'm just not the power-gamer wanting those high graphics.

As a remark on your "no consequence for failure", well I disagree there too. Not only does it take away 10% of your durability, which means you'll have to repair quicker, it also costs money to repair. I remember from my starting days that there was nothing worse than having to corpserun, especially at those places where the spirit healer was very remote. Also, when you are level 70 and get decent gear, it will cost lots and lots.

As for you not being able to get a feel for your character, well too bad. Try sitting for 10 minutes, writing the story behind your gnome character and make a real gnome-name for him, like Tinkerlad or who cares. Then find out who he is related to, where he came from etc etc and roll RP and have cybersex in the dark areas of the map ^^

~ŠeRn~
BTW: You Are All Buffle Headed
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(17-Oct-2008 at 15:12)


That is a point, what kind of server did you start on? Normal? By the sounds of it, you'd be more interested in a RP or RPPVP server if you aren't on it already.

........Why does the thin grey strand......Ah, you will understand;.......................I should find, for a reprimand
.......Floating up from the forgotten......When I carried my mother downstairs,.....To my gaiety, a few long grey hairs
......Cigarette between my fingers,......A few times only, at the beginning..........On the breast of my coat; and one by one
.....Why does it trouble me?.............Of her soft-foot malady,.......................I watched them float up the dark chimney.
#8  
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(18-Oct-2008 at 00:57)


I'll just make a few notes:

WoW has really nice graphics (and the latest patch even improved it a lot). It's the STYLE you don't like!

But it's just a matter of taste. Honestly, I find it amazing that Blizzard managed to create such a big and detailed world. And I do think that the style WoW has caters for a lot more people. Female characters showing off their "attributes"? How's that different from any other game?

But anyways. No matter which game you look at, there's good and bad sides to it. WoW has a LOT of hours of gametime in it, and a huge community. And there's almost always some new place to go, as Blizzard regularly adds new content. Also, the depth to quests varies a lot. Some quests are huge chains, with a lot of lore / story to it. Some just aren't. And don't expect the great stories in the noobie areas..


Hmmmm... I think I need a new signature
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(Posted as Eldarad)
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(18-Oct-2008 at 01:06)


I've never played WoW and never felt the inclination to.
But it does surprise me that the character creation screens that are, presumably, the first thing a new player sees, are as unimpressive as Grashnak suggests.

You only have power over people as long as you don't take everything from them.
But when you've robbed a man of everything, he's no longer in your power - he is free again.
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(Posted as DeRnhelm)
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(18-Oct-2008 at 01:44)


Well, WoW never improved or changed the character creation screen since the start so it might be a bit outdated. When I played Oblivion, for example, I thought there to be too many different quirky things you could do with the face and body to customize it.

So I guess the char selection screen is outdated vs newer games, but the roleplaying communities on the selected realms are probably the most immense ones ever. I've heard of a guild on a server that calls themselves "Stormwind Night Watch" or something, and they make sure that there always is some player walking around Stormwind during night to keep it safe

As for the female attributes, well I don't complain. When you play an MMO online you're somehow transferring yourself from the real world to relate to an online game where your character is a perfect avatar of a being, kind of the way painters and sculptors create their beauteous masterpieces out of imagination and fantasies.

~ŠeRn~
BTW: You Are All Buffle Headed
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View Public Profile Find more posts by DeRn HaLL Add DeRn HaLL to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
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(18-Oct-2008 at 14:16)


Unfortunatly I can't remember which server I was on, was too long ago now I'm afraid. I guess it was a standard server, but am certainly not looking for an RP one. It's the lack of imagination in the story presented to you by Blizzard, DeRnhelm suggested I should write my own background and such - whilst thats fine - it dosn't make the game opening any better. It seems counter productive to buy entertainment when I have to do half the work to get entertainment out of it. Being told to kill a few beasties of one type or another for no descernable change to anyone seemed so pointless and brought me no further into the world or made me feel as if I had a place in it.

I've inculded the opening screen for Lotro, you talk the the person in front of you and rescue some hobbits who had been kidnapped - it's the tutorial but you learn to fight as well as have something to do which seems important.

Cybersex ?? Guess there is a community for everyone, wonder how many women are actually there as opposed to men pretending to be women.

Annyyyway... if I did give it another go with undead (we did try them for bit) is a good story fast to get to ? Or I suppose the question really should be - how long do you need to play to get to a real story ?

I had intended to do some like for like comparisons of WoW vs some other games - but for some reason the WoW trial wasn't downloading on my machine. So instead I grabbed a couple of shots from my recent MMO's EVE & Lotro to show that there certainly are other games that don't need feel the need to indulge in cartoon almost-porn to attract in the parishners. I took a look at AoC and and whilst their females are wearing little - at least they had a fairly decent reason for it (you are supposed to start as a galley slave - at least that was the impression I got).

Back to the graphics (and I think I am really not getting my point across at all - sorry about that) it's certainly a matter of taste. I've also included a screen of worms 2 (circa 1996 as I think) because to me at WoW looked like a 3d version of it - I just couldn't take any of my charcters seriously in WoW when they are so cartoonish.
Attached Images
File Type: gif worms2.gif (9.2 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg Lotro Hobbit Character Creation.jpg (305.9 KB, 30 views)
File Type: jpg Lotro Human Character Creation.jpg (313.9 KB, 26 views)
File Type: jpg Starting screen.jpg (205.1 KB, 22 views)
File Type: jpg EVE Caldari Character Creation.jpg (165.1 KB, 23 views)

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
#12  
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(18-Oct-2008 at 18:59)


Re: WoW - Unplayable ?

Originally Posted by Grashnak: View Post

Annyyyway... if I did give it another go with undead (we did try them for bit) is a good story fast to get to ? Or I suppose the question really should be - how long do you need to play to get to a real story ?
Right around lvl 10 I think
The Arugal story you might like but that starts around 15 I think
and you wont be even finishing it up till low to mid 20s IIRC
This leads up to, and ends, with your first instance run if you dont go traipsing around the world on whims.

But like every other MMO the trick to finding good story lines is actually taking the time to read the quests and pretty much paying attention.

Sure at low levels you will find some idiot NPC that wants you to go out and kill some wolves just because he doesnt like them shitting in his yard but then again you are new to adventuring, broke, and looking for work so who cares as long as you get paid, right?

You might want to consider visiting Wowwiki and looking at some race back stories to get a feel of which race better goes with your tastes. Though if I were you I would stay away from Blood Elves, the mounts they get are laughable.

"When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth"
R.I.P. InJustice!
Hit me up on Facebook

EWE-tah
#13  
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(Posted as DeRnhelm)
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(18-Oct-2008 at 20:06)


The Deadmines-questchain starts around level 15 I, which leads to the first quest design for groups. I'm sad to tell you that most of the group quests for the early stage have been removed or made doable solo because of the opening of Outland and the clear lack in people to quest with on low levels.

~ŠeRn~
BTW: You Are All Buffle Headed
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(18-Oct-2008 at 20:45)


I agree that early immersion is a problem for WoW, particularly now that you're likely to join a server where almost everyone is much higher level than you. AoC had it's big flaws, but it did early game immersion very well. The first 20 levels can basically be played as a single player game, where you're the center of the story. The story from the "tutorial" (first 20 levels) continues onwards too, in destiny quests (I think it was called) that you have every ten levels (or something).

Leveling up in AoC was more fun than doing the same in WoW, despite the lack of quests, but part of what made WoW so much more successful is that the end-game content is plentiful. It's almost like that's where the game starts (big generalization), and that will obviously not suit everyone.
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(19-Oct-2008 at 00:40)
Starting with WoW at this point is a big nono. I played the first half year of the game, together with the open beta. Levelling up back in that time was a real challenge and a lot of fun. Everything was pretty new to everyone and especially if you played with friends real discoveries were to be made.

The endgame never appealed to me, I like organization but not planning to stay home without any interruption for over 2 hours. It's just a bit too much asked, but that's just me. Also, the game is about the community, you need to find your place there. That is, get a nice guild where you can chit chat while you do boring grinding (yes, the game self is not that good gameplay wise imo, it's the atmosphere where you accept pretty dull gameplay).

But that's just my opinion
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(01-Nov-2008 at 19:32)
Re: WoW - Unplayable ?

Originally Posted by Grashnak: View Post
I've inculded the opening screen for Lotro, you talk the the person in front of you and rescue some hobbits who had been kidnapped - it's the tutorial but you learn to fight as well as have something to do which seems important.
Keep in mind that LoTR and AoC both cheat in the start. They start as single player games which reduces some of the limitations of a MMORPG, i.e, that you have lots of players all doing the same quests at the same time. By the time you get to the multiplayer areas you are reduced to "get me 20 wolf skins" quests just as in WoW, or when you have more story based quests, the absurdity of having 10 heroes standing in line to kill the evil wizard.
Quote:
Annyyyway... if I did give it another go with undead (we did try them for bit) is a good story fast to get to ? Or I suppose the question really should be - how long do you need to play to get to a real story ?
You will get a few good stories now and then, but most of the quests are pretty silly.

Quote:
I just couldn't take any of my charcters seriously in WoW when they are so cartoonish.
To me that is an advantage. First, if they are cartoons to start with you don't have to get annoyed at the inevitable glitches. If a game tries to look realistic failures are a lot more annoying. Second, WoW or other MMORGP:s are excersises in mass slaughter. I prefer that the stuff I kill isn't too realistic, at least as long as the game doesn't include any moral consequences for your actions. In WoW you are supposed to do quests without asking if killing those 20 farmers is really justified.
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(03-Nov-2008 at 03:04)


I completely agree with you Grashnak, i play lotro and i played the 10 day free trial of WoW. There is a huge difference of gameplay, emercement and realism between the two games.

I really disliked WoW in all aspects. Do not think you're the only one to think so there are more other MMO players than all WoW players put together with most sharing the same pov and commin dislike to wow.

Aka Attila, old school founder of NA and TDC, King of Kings of offensive Alliances
#18  
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(03-Nov-2008 at 13:44)


Re: WoW - Unplayable ?

Originally Posted by Bernel: View Post
Keep in mind that LoTR and AoC both cheat in the start. They start as single player games which reduces some of the limitations of a MMORPG, i.e, that you have lots of players all doing the same quests at the same time. By the time you get to the multiplayer areas you are reduced to "get me 20 wolf skins" quests just as in WoW, or when you have more story based quests, the absurdity of having 10 heroes standing in line to kill the evil wizard.
Not sure where you got the impression Lotro is single player only for the first 20 lvls, it's lvl 1 to 2 only (about 10 minutes real time). The first group (fellowship) quest I can think of is to kill a big spider, don't remember the exact level of the quest, but she in lvl8 IIRC so suspect quest is same. There certainly are a lot of fellowship quests sub lvl20.

I thought that AoC's hiding the multiplayer below lvl20 was a little odd, but then since I've not played it I cannot really comment, maybe it works well. You may consider it cheating, but if it helps with immersement - why is it a bad thing ?

Fortunatly the server I play on has the lowest population for Lotro and whilst you occasionly run into others trying to get the same objective it's fairly rare, the other MMO's I've played work better with more people. Mabye that has coloured my perceptions & I could be being unfair with WoW.

Quote:
In WoW you are supposed to do quests without asking if killing those 20 farmers is really justified.
That was kinda my point from the opening quests I did.

This is what every PvP argument boils down to:
Dear Devs:
Rock is overpowered, please nerf. Paper is fine.
Yours, Scissors
#19  
View Public Profile Find more posts by Grashnak Add Grashnak to your Buddy List Reply with Quote
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(04-Nov-2008 at 09:08)
Re: WoW - Unplayable ?

Originally Posted by Grashnak: View Post
Not sure where you got the impression Lotro is single player only for the first 20 lvls, it's lvl 1 to 2 only (about 10 minutes real time).
I never claimed anything like that, I just think that you exaggerated the difference between the games by describing the introduction of LoTR that is a single player game.
Quote:
The first group (fellowship) quest I can think of is to kill a big spider, don't remember the exact level of the quest, but she in lvl8 IIRC so suspect quest is same.
Not much different from WoW in that respect.
Quote:
There certainly are a lot of fellowship quests sub lvl20.
What annoyed me is the mood breaking "Fellowship Maneuvers" where the people in the group are supposed to press colored buttons in the right order.
Quote:
I thought that AoC's hiding the multiplayer below lvl20 was a little odd, but then since I've not played it I cannot really comment, maybe it works well.
Since it can now be had very cheap I bought it recently for the first free month, I doubt I will extend the subscription. The first 5 levels are strictly single level, then you get to a town called Tortage where you can switch between 'day' when you play multiplayer and 'night' where you have a single player story. I find it odd that you run around in the same areas yet during the night you can only do the night quests and vice versa.
Quote:
You may consider it cheating, but if it helps with immersement - why is it a bad thing ?
It isn't necessary a bad thing, but it doesn't give you any good idea what the game will be like further on either.
Quote:
That was kinda my point from the opening quests I did.
LoTR simplifies the ethics by having only on fraction so that you only play good (except for that odd monster play). In WoW while there are some common enemies the fractions often fight each other, making mobs that are friends to one side enemies to the other.
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