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New World first impressions

Gamingtodaynews1b - New World first impressions
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Going to give my very, very fast and loose impressions, if I get info wrong please feel free to correct or answer me. Just going to give pros and cons.

Pros:

  • Very pretty game, like the aesthetic of the environments, characters, creatures and gear.

  • Zone control and the faction system has potential to be a pretty fun thing to play with, with the opt-in pvp. I understand that people are upset they moved away from always pvp and any kind of full-loot, but what they have here with xp buffs, pvp missions that force a flag, and other mechanics still make it feel PVP-forward.

  • When attacks connect, they feel pretty good. Jittery mobs and some other issues get in the way of this, some of it is simply opening day woes, but some of it is core design issues.

  • I like being able to add unique ingredients to a weapon/armor craft to add certain bonuses to items, so its nice to see here.

Cons:

  • Enemy variety is very poor. For an MMO it really felt like they had a small handful of enemies, with little to no gameplay variance. Projectiles, melee, and leapers/chargers…. that's mostly what I'm seeing in my time with the game and others, through streams. Maybe this changes in a big way later?

  • Combat…. where to begin. First, as to be expected with combat like this, when there is any kind of lag it feels terrible. Attacks whiffing, and high punishes. Playing with any kind of latency would probably always be like this, which is a massive turn-off. Not sure there is an answer to this, but worth mentioning.

  • Hit-stun from attacks is oppressive and feels like shit. The 2H hammer, unless there is some way to mitigate hit-stun (heaviest armor??), is functionally useless. The moment someone faster, pvp or pve, lands a hit you are at their mercy to be comboed. And with the very slow animations, there is no reason you will ever hit first. It feels inconsistent on what attacks can be blocked and what just goes through it, and blocking does not feel great or useful, and probably even harmful if your guard is broken.

  • And even if the combat didn't feel terrible due to the above point, good luck catching anyone, as slows/snares/leaps or any sort of gap-close or hobbling effect is just… not there. Unless you get the firestaff for that blink. Currently the best defense to getting attacked is… just turn on your heels and run, and you're fine.

  • Even if the above two points weren't an issue, the abilities available are ill-explained, boring, and there are way too few. Very little utlity abilities, and even if there were more, having only 3 available per weapon slot just feels way too restrictive. It feels more restrictive than ESO and does not have anywhere the ability variety and utility to make the limited choices feel fun and impactful. I guess my point is- 3 active abilities per weapon set is way too little, but at the same time the abilities aren't interesting/useful enough to be sad about it.

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  • Quest design is abysmal even by MMO standards. The same exact non-descript 'supply boxes' to loot, being protected by the same 5 enemy types. PVP missions are more interesting by nature of pvp, and there is some potential meat to the idea, but 'Patrol x area' with a level range indicator that isn't working (???) means I spent the pvp mission of patrolling, sitting in a corner crouched to get the credit. Its just a good idea with the smallest amount of effort put into it.

  • Crafting is super boring, and I'm not sure its designed really well…. things like most professions not needing any ingredients from the tier before, Arcana having both Staves and Potions (very high value compared to others…), the effortlessness of actual crafting which just means you need to level everything because there's no reason not to… etc. Not really impressed.

  • Item scarcity and the overall economy, not sure its well thought out unless I'm not seeing the bigger picture. What creates the need for player made items? Is there really a value to having local auction houses when the resources aren't scarce to locales, the player need is low, there's no item drop or destruction on death, and repairing items is very low effort and easily supplied? What is motivating people to ferry items around, and compelling gameplay does it introduce? I feel like this is vestigial from when the game was following a different vision, or its being blindly copied without them understanding why its used in sandbox games in the first place. I dunno, maybe I am misunderstanding, this point I'm mostly just confused on.

  • Itemization is very, very boring. I looked through all the perks and stuff you can get for your gear, and a vast vast majority of stuff that you can get for gear is just a flat percentage buff to damage or defense, and every piece of gear has that massive 'GEAR SCORE' value at the top which feels so Destiny, and also feels like I'm being beaten over the head with the carrot they are trying to entice me with. Not impressed with gearing in the game in the slightest.

  • Introduction was confusing, disorienting and did not endear me to the game at all.

Phew… ok that's all I got. I guess just like Amazon's other endeavor, it feels like the game was made by committee without the people making the choices really understanding the WHY of the game systems employed, but just that they are used by other successful games they want to imitate. For me, it feels soulless.

I'm open to being told I'm wrong and why, or what others thoughts are!

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