Alpha Impressions: First Time Playing
Wargfoot last edited by
This weekend I spent 4hrs. in the Fractured Online alpha.
My initial impressions are as follows; bearing in mind this is an early alpha and this weekend was more a stress test than a test of content.
1: I like the progression in this game. The developers have made repeated statements about the progression being horizontal with very little vertical progression available. This makes sense in a game that will have some PvP. You will never see the notice: “You’ve reached level 4” in Fractured Online. Launch the balloons and start tossing confetti.
2: You are rewarded for exploring, in fact, this is a necessary part of progression as exploration earns you points that you can use to buy talents on the talent tree. Exploration means finding new harvestable items, killing monsters, and so forth.
3: You are rewarded for interacting with monsters. As you fight them you gain knowledge about them and after you’ve learned enough about the monster you gain access to the some of the monster’s skills. for example, I fought small spiders long enough to earn the “Magic Missile” skill – a skill they’ve been using on me to great effect.
4: The game has non-instanced housing. Community, town building, and housing is an important part of this title. There is some grind built into that equation but the process and reward seem to merit the effort.
5: I’ve not run from an entry level monster since Ultima Online. A young wolf ended up chasing me around the map. I died more to the “easy” monsters in this game than I’ve died running group quests solo in LOTRO. The game is difficult and you’ll have to equip yourself based on what you’ll be fighting.
6: You find out how difficult a monster is to fight by either recognizing that it is large and dangerous in appearance or by poking it with a stick and making mental notes about what happens. No bar, no level, no green/blue/yellow/red indicators. Thank heavens – knowledge about a monster beyond reading a color coded chart is required.
7: I like how death is handled. The MOBs will generally knock you down and after 30 seconds you can get back up again but have part of your health bar unavailable until you rest at an inn. This effect will stack until you rest at an inn. You can choose to fight on, with less maximum health, or trot yourself back to town, bank items, and rest up.
8: You don’t find gear on monsters, only components. All gear is player made as there are no vendor NPCs.
9: The map indicated points of interest which gave some direction and motivation for exploration.
1: There is very little instruction in the game. I would want the tutorials to do a little bit more hand-holding, and in fact, I think a tutorial instance would be in order. It would help save new player questions from dominating the chat.
2: I was disappointed that the mines located on the map (at least the ones I visited) weren’t underground. I was hoping to go someplace that would require a torch. It could be that these exist, and I simply failed to locate them. I do want to see a dungeon at some point.
3: I didn’t do a ton of exploring but I’d like to see more variety on the landscape. In addition to the bandit camps I’d like to see random graveyards, destroyed caravans, abandoned settlements, and ancient ruins. I went to the sea shore and there were no sea specific mobs (please put in wrecked ships).
4: I’m not sure of the use of money outside of building a town, yet from the player chat the money sinks are extensive. I didn’t get far enough into the game to be sure.
5: The landscape can be a little bit frustrating. There are terraces scattered about that serve as barriers that you must work your way around. I dislike being able to see an area I want to explore but to get there I have to run around a terrace to a road, and then back to the spot I was before but just a little lower on the terrace.
6: Combat feels a little bit clunky, and it took 4 hours of playing for me to finally figure out how some of it works. I kept trying to click on a monster to target it and upon missing the monster with my click I’d walk to that location I’d inadvertently selected. The select/cast/kiting rotation in this game is challenging and not very rewarding.
7: A corpse should eventually be reduced to a skeleton and become freely lootable by all players just as in Ultima Online. I don’t know if Fractured Online does that since I always recovered, but it is simply one of the coolest mechanisms in online gaming, period.
I don’t like the game but I did buy a lifetime subscription.
New World leads with a very solid first impression. In fact, with New World the first impression is so good one has a tendency to overlook the clues (both large and small) that they don’t really have a guiding vision and even if they did know where they were heading they wouldn’t know how to get there.
Fractured Online has a long way to go to realize the full vision of what they’re pursuing but all the early indicators seem to radiate the same message: “We’ve got a very clear vision of what we want and we’re capable of materializing it”. In short, the game isn’t yet what I want it (alpha, remember) but there is enough here to convince me that it can happen and that the team knows what they’re doing.
Ruisert TF#1 - WHISPERER last edited by
Ex-LOTRO player here.
Have to agree with your assessment almost totally, except for the bit about mines. Most primitive mines were surface lodes. But, once the surface ore plays out...
I would add a few of my CONS:
Small stones are far too hard to find and weigh more than they probably should. When I first tried to find stones, I was looking at a landscape literally full of stones, but they were all made from Unobtainium or something...
Campfires take way too many stones. (My toon was an archer. Load was a problem, always.)
Medieval Dynasty does much better at all of this. Multiple kinds of campfires, stones are lighter and ludicrously easy to find. IF you want to spend the time gathering them...
Would be nice to have NPC's to interact with - buy/sell/order purchase of items, etc. I like the idea of player made gear, but I know from when this was tried on MUD's, it ran into some serious supply/demand issues. Most players wanted to adventure (duh) rather than do boring crafting. At least Fractured gives an incentive to craft.
The auto-run function seems to have been rushed, since it uses an already bound key, forcing players to rebind. LOTRO'S auto-run NUMLOCK choice isn't perhaps the best choice, but still better. MD makes you pay to run with a loss of stamina, which I approve of.
Sadly, my old computer doesn't play well with MMO's, and this one runs on Unity, which also seems to cause problems for me. Unity has a bit of a bad rep, I understand it doesn't scale well for larger projects like an MMO. Not a dev, so I may be wrong about that. I just know that about half the Unity based games I try just will not run for me.
This Alpha, for me, wasn't so much about trying to help the devs as much as it was for me to see if this game is worth sticking around for. And sadly, it won't be until I can afford a newer computer.
But hey, I got a lead on another one to try.
dracokalen TF#1 - WHISPERER last edited by
I enjoyed exploring and advancement.
But between camera and mouse system I was not impressed.
Like above, click on monster to target and if I miss I walk right up to him and if I click on him I fire off a spell. It makes ranged combat all messed up, not to mention after targeting and firing off a spell, then I hit magic missile and it says "invalid target"
Now I understand this was only a server stress test. But man, that functionality.
Jacenson TF#12 - PEOPLE'S HERALD last edited by
@Wargfoot solid feedback
Jenaut TF#3 - ENVOY last edited by
You pretty much said everything that I noticed. I could not construct it any better myself. The invisible barriers, tutorial in the game was okay to me personally but I can see it can be a turn off for some people even then we will get youtube people just make tutorials so I am iffy on that myself. I just hope it wont go to shit with gamigo.
OlivePit TF#8 - GENERAL AMBASSADOR last edited by
There is a good bit of land scape and enviroment variability. You just have to travel there.
The small stones problem is partially enviromental. Go to the Creeping or whispering woods and they are littered everywhere, while they are less prevelant in other areas. Just as certain trees / plants / animals / mobs / ores are regional.
Developing the habit of carryig 10 stones and picking them up when you see them generally fixes the issue.
Having low strength definatly makes this harder ! but that is all part of the stat and equipment/ talent choices which have consequences mentality of the game. As the tank I would carry 20 stones for the party of 4 to compensate for the weaker allies.. Again, the game is group oriented highlighting how diversity of allies is valuble.
As a past solo mage I feel the pain, but even back then was able to keep 10 stones on me when adventuring... I just didant get to keep as much loot as everyone else XD.
The cliffs are very intentional. Probably to guide player movement to make it more predictable for other players to set up ambushes - like bandits- and further encourage group actions for defense and offense. We had a teleport spell that you could use to go over mountains... it was patched fast, repeatedly, and hard. You can still go up and down some of the cliffs if you know the trick, but is a hassle.
Right click attacks are your friend.
There is a modest amount of player support from players via the wiki and the forum. We were hoping that Gamigo would pick up the work and make it all shiny and nice... they have not yet... Mostly people are unwilling to look, which is sad.
Jameow TF#8 - GENERAL AMBASSADOR last edited by
@dracokalen I had to ask to discover with ranged attacks, you right click to attack without moving because I was having the same problem.
Personally I prefer the Diablo shift + left click