Sunday, September 6, 2009

More Aion...

More on Aion ... "Open Beta Week" is over, the above images are my now deceased characters: Frodo (a ranger), Jopsaro (an assassin), Sethgreen (a gladiator) and Elamont (spirit master with his water pet there). (click on them to enlarge)

I know I said I was going to be on Triniel with my Asmodae characters... but apparently that's now considered an 'east coast' server. Considering that I tend to game late at night, I may actually jump into the Oceanic server 'Nezekan'. I'll still use Vaizel for my Eloys characters if I bother with that side. It seems Asmodae are *far* more popular at the moment, that could be a balance problem for Aion.

Aion is fun to play and beautiful to look at.

It's a shame their login system is such a spewing mess of festering dog vomit!

The "Pre-select" phase started at noon today. The point of this is to allow pre-order customers to reserve names and servers they want to play on. Due to "Technical issues" that were not present during either beta phases, I haven't been able to get into Aion to pick my server or names today. "Can not connect to authentication server." is the error I keep getting, when it bothers to give me an error at all. The rest of the time it just silently sits there doing nothing after I attempt to log in.

Somewhat disappointed. More annoyed at how much time I wasted today trying to figure out if this problem was on MY side or not.
YES my dsl link is working fine.
YES my copy of Aion is fully patched.
YES I completely re-installed Aion FROM SCRATCH.
YES I tried it without my firewall up.
YES I tried sacrificing a chicken at midnight. (okay no, not really).
YES I sent a barking mad ticket in to ncsoft tech support... maybe I'll get another unhelpful auto-reply from them someday.

ANYWAY. It's not like I can actually PLAY.. still have to wait for Sunday for that. Assuming I can actually log in on Sunday. (I'm not feeling lucky at the moment).

ANYWAY... sorry. Grumpy. (This blog is for random ranting after all. There you go.)

So, a report card, CLOSED BETA performance compared to OPEN BETA performance:

Graphics: No change, still excellent. I'm embarassed to say I've got over 500 snapshots from the game on disk now, which is very unlike me. Maybe part of the photofrenzy is based on knowing my beta characters would soon be gone forever and I wanted some record of having them.

Gameplay: No change, still love it... Glad so much of the content seems to be solo-able and pick-up groups come together easily enough for the few areas where soloing is suicidal.

Chat "content": WORSE. This isn't a technical issue, it's a "newbie behavior" issue. It's better just to turn OFF the region and LFG channels to avoid the trolls. Conversation is dominated by WoW-fans/deserters. Hopefully now that the beta tourist/trolls have to subscribe and pay to blather on things will calm down a little.

The Chat System itself in Aion, frankly, still blows chunks:
  1. The /ignore command. We have no choice over how we use caps in our names, why is this command case sensitive? Sorry but that just utterly moronic. Fortunately there doesn't seem to be a limit to how many people you can ignore.
  2. Local chat prefix is /s, (or /normal ?) It was too much trouble to add /say as an option? Way too many people are confused by this... and obviously so because of #3...
  3. unknown /slashcommands should NOT be echoed to the current chanel. They should generate an error "command /whatever unknown". or something.
    Chat system NEEDS WORK.
Voicework: Somewhat more annoying. After a week of listening to the clerics yelling "Dombraro" I have to admit I liked whatever they were chanting before. The shriek of the female in their battle cries is just over the top annoying. Fortunately I think that kind of voicework can be easily reduced in volume in options.

Music: IMPROVED. more nicely integrated than last time. More subtle, less stage-stealing/repetative. Yay! =)

LAG: SAME, little to none. Almost non-existant in my experience, had 20 minutes of rubberbanding around midnight and a disconnect, but the rest of the day was smooth as butter. The complaints about lag, (from what sounds like ComCast customers) was unending though. (Unfortunately they weren't lagged enough to completely silence them. ;)

: SAME. very decent with mostly maxed out settings on my 4 year old box. Max-rez tends to make the video cut-scenes stutter some, so I stay on a slightly lower rez setting, with the other params maxed.

New Character Appearance Options: IMPROVED. Heh... Without intending to at first, one of my characters started looking like Seth Green, so, well, I tinkered with his face a bit more and have been getting compliments in game for the resemblance. (er, well, green skin not withstanding) =) oh, and because we can't have spaces or caps after the first letter in names, he was merely dubbed "Sethgreen". Sigh. Anyway.

Questing Choke Points: MUCH IMPROVED. No where near as big an issue as it was in Closed Beta, they apparently added several more 'channels' (parallel instances of the newbie areas)... definitely a better experience than in closed beta where a standing group of 30 people were standing around cutting in line to grab a quest completions item in a few spots. (they only spawn once a minute it seems)

Logging In: STILL AWFUL. The loading screen takes *FOREVER*. Far too often progress never advances from the LOGIN page to the EULA page because the authentication servers are overloaded. Heck you don't even know if the game is hung or still trying half the time. I've waited for EULA page to come up for 10 minutes with no feedback. Bad... bad... bad... terrible.. unprofessional... bad. Add progress bars or *something*. @)#%&)#*$#. I've been trying to get into the pre-select for 45 minutes now. 50% of the time, the login page hangs, 50% of the time I get a auth server not responding. *grr*

Crafting: (no experience with it in closed beta). As a long time Secondlifer, the idea of crafting in MMO's seems more like collecting ceral box-tops and mailing them back in for prizes to me. Normally, I can't be bothered with it. Even so, I dabbled with "crafting" in Aion a little during the open beta, and may play with it further in the live version. The apparatus is nicely modelled/animated, the system seems reasonable. Fair activity to engage in while watching a movie or something on the side. ;)

I still need to shop around to find a large casual mostly PvE, guild of level-headed gamers to join up with. My goals are to explore the classes I've picked to play to their fullest and to see the world... not to farm the same content over and over. That may not be compatible with a lot of guilds.


Ethereal Felinoid said...

OMG!!! TAKE ME WITH YOU!!! I wants to flys and have a smexy avatar like you!!! LOL

Automouse2 Dot Com said...

Hello :)
We sell the best Game-Bots for Aion & Others.
also sell the best automouse & fps mouse.
Our Products are smart & brilliant, also Safe.
Check them out !!!! It's amazing.
Have a nice day~~~~* [ ]