Aion Beta

As pretty much everyone on the planet knows, the 3rd Aion Beta event is underway this weekend but maybe what they don’t know is that I happen to also be partaking in it. I don’t really want to go into huge detail about it all because almost every other blog out there has already either summarised or reviewed it in some form so I’d just be repeating stuff they’ve already said. Plus I haven’t played it nearly enough to pass any concrete judgement on it other than my initial impressions. However, if you want to find out more information about the game than I can supply, I can recommend Keen and Graev’s Aion vs WAR and Aion vs WoW comparisons, they are quite informative.

Initial Impressions

Mantooth, Warrior

Mantooth - Fat, Beared, Sexy Warrior

Aion is impressive. From the moment you download the game to the moment you log out of your first play session, it’s slick and steady with a style and form that walks up to you, slaps you in the face and yells, “you’re gonna like me, sucka”. It’s absolutely nothing you haven’t seen before but I don’t consider that to be a bad thing. People deride it by saying that it’s just a WoW clone but then I say WoW was just a clone of Everquest. Almost every MMORPG that comes out is similar to the last set except they have a couple of new features or do something a little differently. It doesn’t hamper my enjoyment of the genre – although I’d love to see some more innovation and drastic changes, it’s what I’ve come to expect. However, being a good game doesn’t necessarily mean doing something new, sometimes it can just mean doing something the best.

The combat in Aion is fast, fun and funky and the music and environment really come together to form a cohessive experience. The controls are a little odd to me, just like Lineage 2, and I constantly find myself trying to move the camera around my character but accidentally using the wrong mouse button. It also has the Korean movement technique of clicking somewhere on the ground to make your character run to that spot. Although quite useful it’s very alien to me and slightly off putting. I’m sure they will let you disable the feature at some point though.

The Beta

The beta is running smoothly, very smoothly. In fact, I haven’t participated in a beta this well run in, well, ever. The game feels completely finished and polished so it gives me high hopes for it’s release in September. Yes, September. Three months away. If I’ve got any problem with the beta is that it’s so far away from the final release of the game and I find myself resisting the urge to log in and play it simply because I don’t want to spoil myself so soon. I know, I could’ve waited – should’ve waited – but curiosity got the better of me.

Conclusion

Hard to really conclude anything and I don’t want to give the impression that I’m reviewing the game. I really haven’t played it enough and, if games like Age of Conan and Warhammer Online taught me anything, it’s that longevity is the real stamp of success on a MMORPG. Aion may well turn out to be hugely fun for four weeks and then become utterly boring with absolutely no end game. Still, it’s first impressions are very good and it definitely feels like a grade-A, heavy weight competitor in the MMO market.

So am I going to buy it? Yeah. But I gotta because I ordered it from NCSoft so I could play the beta. So I guess a more telling question would be, “do I regret buying it?”. The answer to that, is no.

If you liked this post, why not subscribe to the RSS feed.


Related Posts

  1. Aion – Levels 1 to 10
  2. Inbreeding In Aion
  3. RIFT Open Beta Impressions
  4. Aion Character Pre-Selection
  5. You Really Shouldn’t Be Playing The SW:TOR Beta

8 Comments

  1. Sharon says:

    You can disable that click-to-move thing in the options. It was one of the first things I did, because I can’t stand clicking to move. :)

  2. Beej says:

    Clicking to move was fine in a 2D game, but in 3D space, too often the mouse gets a few pixels off and instead of actually targeting what I want to, I move half a world a way. It becomes more frustrating than useful.

    Aion doesn’t impress me so far. I’ve not played it, but like I said on Dragonchaser’s post, it just doesn’t seem to have the pizazz a new game needs to grab my attention. It doesn’t seem to do anything we’ve not seen before, and that hurts it in my eyes. I’ll give it a shot when there’s a free trial, but they’ll get none of my money up front.

  3. Naamah says:

    Click to move can be disabled in the options menu currently, as can the option to automatically run to the target. I turned them off because they feel so “alien” to me and it really helps a lot.

    I think the endgame is gonna be fine. Most of the people I have spoken with who are playing the Korean client love it and they are adding a ton of new content with the new 1.5 patch.

    All in all, great first impressions! Good read!

  4. Gordon says:

    I can understand people not being excited by Aion. It doesn’t have a strong IP to offset the familiarity with the gameplay. Still, what it does, it seems to do well. I’m going to keep checking it out and will play it properly in September.

  5. [...] enthralled with Asian MMOs as a whole.  But I’m willing to listen — and quite a few bloggers are making a case for and against it.  Stay [...]

  6. Longasc says:

    Very nice summary. It is definitely fun, but I have no clue if it will keep me occupied for more than a month, or if I will like the pvp endgame at all.

    http://s83.photobucket.com/albums/j319/Longasc/Aion/

    Some beta pics! :) I hope to add some more next weekend.

    You will write a review and I will comment on it, then I do not have to write my own review on my blog that I never used so far, ok? :)

  7. Nice thing dude! I also read keen and graev review. And all of you said that it was a great game. I am speechless now because I haven’t try to play the game. Maybe, I’ll just have to wait until it is release so I can also experience how great this game is.

Leave a Reply