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The past year or so has been a real dry patch for me as far as mmo's are concerned, jumping from game to game like we all do and nothing quite hitting the spot.
This year I've had another shot at Rift, WoW, Lotro, TSW, GW2 and tried some games for the first time like Darkfall and Tera
I thought Darkfall was really cool, the huge open world and full loot concept excited me alot but it turns out that game is a little too hardcore for my current set-up. If only I had played it when I was 18 and in college. I felt like it was too much of a time-sink with not much fluff or rewards for the semi-casual player that I am. Don't get me wrong I don't like to be handheld and just given free loot but at the same time, Darkfall requires so much time to gain prowess (exp) that I just couldn't ever see myself getting anywhere. I had 2.8k prowess after 26 hours gameplay, to be considered viable for pvp guilds I think it was like 30-50k? and with most players rolling about with 200-400k I was just a bit overwhelmed and that kinda put me off.
Anyway, on to Tera.
I've got to admit I'm not the biggest fan of asian art styles in games, it just doesn't do it for me. That's the main reason I never played Tera in the first place, but this all time low dry patch forced me onto a dreaded anime style game -.-
I didn't expect much to be honest, I was just wasting time when I downloaded the game but I was pleasantly surprised when I logged in.
First of all, I was kinda shocked at how many players were in the starting area for a game that isn't new by any means, surely that's a good sign for the population of the game? I thought so
The graphics looked pretty amazing if I'm honest, my new gaming rig worked wonders and the surrounding landscape in the starter area was actually quite stunning. Bright, vivid colours with dream like fantasy backdrops.
Levels 1-11 were fairly standard entry level stuff that you'd expect from a AAA themepark, nothing much to elaborate on here.
At level 11 you take a flight to the main city which is a truly amazing ride, the graphics and amount of effort gone in to such a trivial thing like transport was really quite spectacular. When I landed in the city, the size of the playerbase really hit home. I've not seen a busier city since like shattrath during TBC and it was really uplifting to see so many players going about their daily business. After mooching around the city for a while and perving at level 60's in their crazy cool looking gear I ventured out into lumbertown, the next levelling area..
We began to chew through the quests in lumbertown which were all pretty standard, but when we were out killing some boars a level 15 player started attacking me and I was like WTF!? luckily my friend who I was playing with was nearby and we stomped him out at level 11 which felt awesome. It was much more exciting combat wise compared to tab targetting games such as WoW. Having to actively dodge abilities and aim mine is not something unique to Tera but they seemed to do it really well. We then turned our PvP on and spent like 5 hours straight just fighting whoever was up for it. Thats the beauty of the world Pvp in Tera. You can be ganked at anytime by anyone but they have to turn their pvp on to attack you, which in turn leaves them open to attacks from anyone nearby. So when we turned ours on and started fighting a few players, it was common that we would soon be overwhelmed as other players would see our bright red names and get stuck in aswell, but it was so much fun.
I'm playing a lancer, which is one of the tank classes in the game so I was gagging to get in a dungeon and experience tanking in a action combat game. Just as I wanted to do it in gw2 but the fact they didn't endorse the trinity made that impossible
The dungeon we did was called Bastion of Lok and we did it 2 man although I think its a typical 5 man like other games. I think the only thing that made this possible was the fact we were patient and healed up between trash and that we had these cool relic type weapons that were fully enchanted so they were so OP compared to other weapons that were available at our level. You get those weapons by collecting these shards from creatures in that area, quite a low drop rate but we grinded an hour or so and managed to get em all. The dungeon was really fun , especially the boss fights. It was everything I wanted in GW2, I was tanking, but it required me to watch the bosses movements and learn when to block and when to straight up jump out of the way or be crushed. Sure we died a few times but that made it more fun and I can't remember the last time I had fun / died in a low level dungeon?
Anyway, that's it from me. I'm currently level 24 and can't wait to get playing again tonight after work. The battlegrounds open up at 30 which I'm excited for and I plan on breaking up the standard questing by fighting anyone who's game in the open world. And believe me, a fight is never far away on the most densely populated game I've seen in years.
If you're going through similar phase to me with mmo's,
give it a shot because it might just fill the void until Wildstar / ESO / Star Citizen / Whatever you're waiting on comes out.
Edit: In b4 "You must work for Tera" type posts that I see on here when someone tries to praise a game. My account is from 2012.
I am the Arch-fiend, the Despoiler of Worlds, and by my hands shall the false Emperor fall.