Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Forsaken World Review

I have decided to try and review a couple more games. This time on the firing line is the F2P game Forsaken World by PWI. Like most of my other reviews, this is strictly from a newbie's view point, and so I am only reviewing what I managed to get done and see from level 1-20.

To start off, I have mentioned in the past that PWI's games tend to have wonky control schemes that I never quite liked, and this still holds try for Forsaken World. Click to Move can't be disabled, moving while you are fighting cancels out autoattack, WASD keys take differently with the camera then a lot of other MMOs most people would be used to. Nothing you can't get over, but it does get annoying as you try and get the muscle memory down for the controls.

Okay, so onto the main review.

The game is freakishly similar to WoW, except it is both more casual and at the same time more complex. I will go into this in more details as I go.

The new character creation window is pretty standard, showing you what your character could look like when you get to max level. The character models at this point are fairly impressive compared to a lot of older F2P MMOs which have much lower quality graphics.

The races available in the game are:
  • Humans
  • Elves
  • Dwarves
  • Forsaken
  • Stonemen

Each race as a particular classes available to it, and Stonemen even go further by limiting the sex which you can be. For instance if you want to be a Stonemen, then you will be a male Protector. you simply have no choice. While if you want to be an Elf, you can choose between a Warrior, Priest, or Bard.

The full lists of classes are:
  • Warrior (Humans and Elves only)
  • Mage (Humans and Forsaken only)
  • Priest (Humans and Elves only)
  • Assassin (Humans and Forsaken only)
  • Marksman (Dwarves only)
  • Protector (Stonemen only)
  • Vampire (Forsaken only)

Of course once you get done with choosing your race and class, you get to do some minor cosmetic choices, hair, hair color, general face appearance, ect. nothing to huge or innovative here.

Going into the game, each race has its own small cut scene just like WoW, giving just a little bit of a back ground for the player, but not really enough that I personally felt any connection. For people that like fluff, they might see this as a weak point.

Gameplay is pretty familiar, you can really see that PWI is targeting WoW players looking for a 'cheaper' solution of games. You get your normal UI with expandable hotbars, minimap, blah blah blah. There are a few things that jump out as very different though almost right away.

First thing I noticed once I got into the game was the Pray button glowing right at the top center of my screen. That allowed me to get equipment and a few other things each time I prayed. Eventually you get an upgrade, that isn't directly time based like your first one, but Zodiac Sign based. you can start getting various bit of items, almost always XP from your prayers. It's an interesting mechanic, but I am not really sure how much it actually adds to the game.

The second functionality that makes the game almost to casual is that auto-path option literally EVERY thing in the game has the option for. It will take you to quest mobs you have to kill, trainers, bank, or anywhere else you want to go. I found myself putting so much weight on that function, that when I actually had to figure out where I wanted to go manually, I actually had a hard time since I didn't ever have to remember where anything was. This of course is a double edged sword for me in that regard.

Pushing onward then. The gameplay is pretty much what you would expect from a WoW F2P clone. You get achievements and mounts starting at level 20, a newbie zone with easy to kill mobs to learn you basic skills, trainer teaches you skills every 5 levels, pretty standard here. My biggest complaint is the fact that the game in a lot of respects tried to be overly casual, and yet there is a lot of functions that are simply not explained outright to you. This comes across almost as hardcore, as I have had to spend a decent amount of time searching wikis, forums, ect trying to get some understanding on what I was expected to be doing.

Along that same lines, I found that there is an amazingly high amount of quests in the starting city for new comers, with daily repeatable quests right out of the gate that level you amazingly fast, almost to fast. I wasn't aware that at level 13-15 I could start doing my first dungeon, as nothing in game actually pointed me to the instance in anyway I could see. Quests seem all over the place, with little hubs everywhere, but nothing really pointing you where you need to go, which can really make a new player seem over whelmed as they find more and more quests that they apparently skipped somewhere out in the wilds.

Grouping is pretty standard affair, the scrolling combat text does get rather confusing though with a full group going all out on a mob as I found out during my one instance run with a few higher levels. The starter instance was pretty simple and straight forward, so anyone with any MMO background should get the idea real fast when doing that for the first time.

I mentioned scrolling combat text, but I should also talk about combat itself. I honestly have not figured out what is expected of me for mana. I burn through mana real fast, usually 4-5 fights and I need to drink or pop a mana potion. I am still trying to figure out if I should be drinking a lot, or expected to be having a ton of mana pots available to use. Once again, this is something the game simply does not tell you.

The pet system is fairly close to the original WoW style hunter, in that you have to get pets that enhance your character with buffs, tanking, damage, ect.. The pet system will be pretty straight forward, with you having to feed your pet, train it for the type of resistances, ect. Once agian, WoW players will understand pretty quickly. The major difference is that in Forsaken World you have to get the pet souls from creatures you kill. I can't go into any further details though in this regard since up to level 20, you don't get that ability.

The biggest thing about this F2P game is that cash shop, I honestly don't see much in there I would say is absolutely required to purchases. Lots of pets, cosmetic gear, potions but nothing that came across as overly game changing in general. Seems fairly balanced, but I won't know for sure until I get more levels under my belt and find myself having to dive into the store for one reason or another, which i am hoping won't be the case.

Overall, Forsaken World is a fun game. It is a lot like WoW in most respects, so don't expect to much in terms of ground breaking achievements, but if you go into the game looking for a new game to play just for fun, you most likely won't be bored. It is Free to play, so there is no harm if giving a shot one way or the other. Of course, for people expecting more hardcore out of the game, this one won't be for you, as levels come fast and easy.
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