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I have now spent a considerable amount of time playing Vindictus and thought it time to share my views on this mmorpg. Amazingly its about half and half. There are some considerable good points and a few devastating bad ones, but I will make sure to throw it all in here for you.
Initial Gameplay for us noobs: An excellent opening and story line really start this game off right. If you slow down and read the story line you find yourself being drawn in like a good book. The character creation is hindered only slightly as they want you to purchase character customization tickets with NX (Irl money) later on. The easy to catch on hack and slash aspect of the game makes it fun for experienced gamers but easy enough my little kids picked it up just fine. The town is rather small and therefore you get to see higher levels right away and it gives you a goal to reach for. Outside of town there is a dock board that allows you to take boats to dungeons. The first 10 levels of dungeons are extremely easy and you are allowed to revive as often as you want for free in combat (Goddess Grace). The first 10 levels of dungeons are also free. As you move back and forth from town you will see ! , ..., and ? signs on your minimap guiding you to quest turn in and quest pickups which make for an easy time of leveling.
The Climb Up Ranks: Going from level 10 to 50 is a true joy. The storyline is fantastic and well put together. Some NPC's you will hate, some you will appreciate like a little brother, and some you will have to witness be destroyed in front of you. All of which makes for a game you actually feel apart of providing you read the story line and don't speed through it. Obtaining gear as you level is near perfect. It is hard enough to help you appreciate getting it and want to show it off, but not so hard that its unattainable as you hit the level that allows you to wear it. If your funds permit you then you can even try your hand at a random dye system and hopefully get some cool colors to show off. The skill system is also spot on allowing you to rank up skills that fit best your play style and allow you to go back and grind more skill points if you chose wrong in which skills you wanted to level.
The downside of the climb is the token system. After level 10 you will recieve 50 silver tokens allowance 3 times a week from your mercenary outpost. These tokens must be spent in order to take a boat to a dungeon, and the boats cost more tokens the more boats you take in a day. The first few boats cost 2 tokens each and then 3 and then 4. The problem here is you will in all likelyhood run out of tokens within the first day of token allowance. In order to continue to play the following 1 or 2 days you will have to purchase tokens with NX (IRL Money). The game then quickly goes from free to play to pay to play. 30 tokens cost about 4 dollars and may last you a week or a couple of days as many dungeons are ran and token used in only 5 minutes. If you do the math you will see that can have you spending close to 50 dollars a month on tokens alone. Way more than the average cost of a monthly fee game. Nexon could fix this by making the NX shop have a monthly pass ticket but they have not. Quite possibly because it nets them more money this way.
The Grind: Level 50 to 60 is nearly an endless grind of the same dungeon over and over again for experience. I have personally killed the giant spider in Hidden so many times when I see a spider in real life I now immediately roll right before jumping forward to attack. There are quests to do when reaching for 60, but the story line tapers off dramaticly and does not provide adequate experience to level. On a good note though there is often some sort of "Event" going on which gives you a break in the mundane grind to level. Updates and expansions come often for a free to play / pay to play game and the armors and weapon styles and looks are detailed and dye customizable allowing you to enhance thier stats and even enchant them.
Community: The overall community depends entirely upon which guild you join. Most guilds stick to thier chosen channel and do a pretty good job of helping each other out, though are usually lacking in advice needed often because noone will know the answer. Overall though people are friendly and while the game has a small pvp duel system in place it rarely goes on except amongst friends promoting a friendly environment.
Gameplay: Controls are easy to accomodate and can even be programmed to the way you like. I personally used a driver and mapped my ps3 controller to use and enjoyed it tremendously. Movement is easy with rare hangups and the interface works they way a good game should. While glitchs do happen for the most part its miniscule. You may fall through the floor once in a great while and just hit unstuck to get out or type /escape. On the off chance a dungeon does go down on you they are mostly so short its no issue to redo them. Lag can become a pain if your connection is slow though if thats the case you can just join other boats and not host your own. The majority of the time if the game lags it doesn't hinder your character or get you killed on a boss which is nice.
The Ugly: Unfortunately all games have some ugly and this one is no exception. Customer service or support is non existent. You can submit a ticket if there is a problem but they will not likely get back to you with a few months if they do at all. Game management is poorly handled and could even be categorized as childish doing mass bans of people for something that is Nexons fault. Recently a "FEW" people found a way to hack in the game. Innocent people who happened to join a grp with them in whats known as a "PuG" (Pick up Group) were banned right along with hackers. It so happens one of my friends who I personally had to set up his computer for him because he was not smart enough to do it himself was banned for "Hacking". This guy can't even program his vcr. All I could do was shake my head. If you are an avid gamer like most people who play games then you will want to play more than 1 to 2 hours a day. If thats the case this game is NOT FREE and can easily run upwards of 200 dollars a month between purchasing tokens, additional bags at 10dollars each (the game only gives you 3 and you have to purchase the others for each individual character), enhancement runes, goddess grace (revivals), and other various things that are not required but near impossible to do without.
Conclusion: I would support and suggest this game if you are a casual player and not an avid gamer. Otherwise you may want to look elsewhere until they fix the reliance on the NX shop.
PC MMORPG 19 FPS 6 CONSOLE 47; Avid Gamer
I Can & I Will