Review by Lord Alchemy

Reviewed: 11/27/04

Best MMORPG to date.

Best MMORPG to date? Hell yes! Why you ask? Because this game gets so many things right that most MMORPGs have to wait for patches to fix right off the bat it’s amazing. Everything about this game exceeds expectations and makes for an extremely addicting game. Expect to waste your life away at your computer monitor.

Graphics: 10/10
This isn’t a rating of how good this game looks; it’s a rating of the graphic engine as it pertains to an MMORPG. Sure, this game might not be the most beautiful MMORPG, but it still looks damn good. The water needs a little improvement, but overall it doesn’t look half bad. The big thing is the art and detail. It’s just amazing. Everything looks like it was used, lived in, just remarkable stuff.

But those aren’t the reasons I gave this a 10 out of 10. Oh no, it’s the genius use of this graphic engine. It’s simple and still looks good. Why is this a benefit? Because of the almost complete lack of any loading screens. The only times you will ever see a loading screen is when you take a form of long distance travel (and of course load at the beginning). It makes for a seemingly huge game and gives it that much more life. You can pretty much walk through most of the game on foot and never see a loading screen.

Why is this so important? Play Ever Quest II for a little bit and then come back and read this. Games like EQII with zones just feel slow and annoying compared to World of Warcraft. Need to do a quest that takes you to the other side of town or to another town? Don’t worry about it because you won’t have to sit through multiple minute long load screens to get there. Just throw on auto run and enjoy the nice breeze in your hair.

Sound: 10/10
This game just sounds pretty. No other way to put it. Sure, there isn’t a ton of voice acting, but the music and sound effects are top notch. The music just fits every place it’s at. You cannot help but fall in love with it. And then we have the voice emotes. Oh, the voice emotes. There are some great voice emotes, but some of the joke voice emotes are pretty much hit or miss. Still nice to have though. Nothing like running to town while doing the train emote.

Gameplay: 10/10
Woooo! Damn this game is fun. There is just so much to do. Crafting is actually handled in a way that it doesn’t hinder you to craft by sucking up the very important equipment funding, thanks mostly to the fact that once you have the materials and recipe to make something, you will never fail making it. No wasted materials. Good stuff. Also, the fact that you can get two main professions and as many secondary professions as you want is a nice touch.

Now, the quest system in this game is freaking amazing. You just can’t beat this quest system. Want to know if an NPC has a quest you can do? Just take a peak over their head, yellow exclamation point means they have a quest for you now, silver means later (you aren’t strong enough or you haven’t completed any prerequisites). This makes it very easy to do and find quests. Any NPC involved in your quest will have this exclamation point over their head.

Quest rewards also kick ass. You get a good amount of exp, you usually get some money, and then you can usually choose a reward from a few options. This means you aren’t stuck with something you won’t use after doing a quest. There is always a reason to do quests no matter what class you are. Also, quest sharing its VERY nice. Got a quest you need help with? Just invite some friends, share the quest, and you all can go at it. No need for town runs to get the quest, just do it on the spot.

Combat is handled very well; the battles for the most part aren’t drawn out. You will usually kill things pretty fast compared to past MMORPGs. This takes away some of the feeling that you only grind all the time through walls just to get some exp. The somewhat faster pace to this MMORPG is a nice change.

A great thing is the ability to solo for once! This doesn’t take away from the party experience; it just makes it possible to kill while on the look out for a party so you aren’t sitting on your hands waiting for one. Also this makes fetch quests a lot easier as you probably won’t be partying to grab quest items so you no longer have to stick around for extended periods of time waiting for everyone to get their items.

Instances are awesome. An Instance is pretty much a dungeon that your group has all to itself. No more camping for hours to kill a rare mob, because once you enter the instance the whole place is yours and yours alone. There are no limits to the number of instances that can be up of the same place so its not like the first group to get in the instance gets the mob, pretty much everyone does! Good stuff.

Overall: 10/10
This game has it all. The lore of the Warcraft universe just drags you in and wont let go. If you like MMORPGs at all I suggest you run post haste to grab your copy of World of Warcraft. As long as you can get past the very laggy launch, you will loose yourself in this game.

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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