"Hey team, more Crabs?"
We need the crabs, don't remove them >_<;
I'm wondering how Everyquest II and Vanguard are doing today? Anyone in those games? Vanguard was a huge hype for lots of my FFXI friends who were EQ vets... Edited, Feb 8th 2010 11:29pm by jpenguin
I gave Vanguard a shot for about a month.
Frankly, the game seems like it probably should have had a chance to succeed. It has a beautiful, varied, and ABSOLUTELY MASSIVE world that isn't separated by zones (though you do get a big pop-in load of the enemies as you cross the "border" of a grid space). The diplomacy system makes NPC interaction actually engaging. The equipment is interesting, albeit a bit all over the place as far as bonuses go (it was a fairly common occurrence for me to find a decent sword from a boss, then suddenly find a sword that's twice as good from a lowbie rat two minutes later). The crafting, like the diplomacy system, makes what would otherwise be a tiring, repetitive system actually engaging and complex. The graphics were pretty comparable to FFXI's, I felt. Not state-of-the-art, but definitely acceptable.
It seemed like it had a lot going for it. But there were two major flaws that marred the game while I was playing:
1) The whole game seemed completely empty. COMPLETELY. You'd run into a small smattering of players in the major towns and starter areas, and the odd player or two in the field or other areas, but that was about it. It's definitely in part due to the sheer size of the world, which is a shame. I just always felt like I was on a server with a couple hundred people. Additionally, it felt like 90% of the server population was in one guild. Out of the 100-ish people in my guild, about 3 actually ever logged in. Many hadn't come on in months, according to our guild list. It just seemed like a game dying a slow, quiet death.
2) Corpse runs. Die in Vanguard, and you can expect a long, annoying trek back to find your tombstone, in order to recover both your equipment, and a portion of the experience that you lost back. And I died A LOT. I couldn't find people to quest with very often, so I spent most of my time playing the game solo, which isn't extremely enjoyable. This is especially bad because most of Vanguard seems geared towards group content; I just fudged my way through it solo, as one of the games more 'gimped' classes. It worked well enough, but I still found myself doing a lot of corpse runs. Sure they make the game more difficult, but it's a difficulty that feels very superfluous and artificial. Add in the strong possibility of getting killed by an enemy that you can't see, or that attacks you through a wall, or that transports through a set of floors to attack you, and you can make for some really frustrating situations.
It's a real shame. If that game were more populated, I think it'd have a ton going for it. I guess they were hurt badly by a buggy release (and probably also by a complete lack of marketing whatsoever). It just seems like it fell just short of panning out.