An Archeage Annoyance

I just don’t understand the recent obsession with Archeage, it’s seriously like gamers in general have the minds of goldfish. Perhaps Trion took so long as it is almost equal to neuralizing the mmo population. Now I’m bad too. I forget a lot but news surrounding Archeage really hasn’t been gone that long. Just a few months ago we were getting reports surrounding the game from Russia and it wasn’t just negative about the cash shop. A few months before that and we had reports from Korea. There are loads and loads of videos up already about near every mechanic and about how the game plays in general. I’ve watched many hours worth of streams about the game before this alpha nonsense but no, let’s go out and pay over 100$ dollars to try a game when there is plenty of information freely available.

Are we forgetting just how quickly the game flopped in the east and transitioned to ftp, it seemed like one of the quickest times ever. That has to be indicative of something. And then, from just about every report and from most of what I’ve seen it’s another in a long line of themeparks. Admittingly a rather pretty, massive and well fleshed out themepark but a themepark nonetheless. It is a linear quest focused experience to cap with dungeons and stuff to grind for gear and many other systems to take copious amounts of time for personal reward.

The Crafting sounds interesting until you realise it will be extremely rng dependant in order to get better gear. Use previous levels set to upgrade in the process but only a chance to make it better, this chance happens all the way along and gets a lot worse nearing the end. It’s a long grind there.. looooooooooooooong. The trading sounds ok, a way to get people moving around the world but then it seems to have merely become another form of the daily. A way to get coins in order to get other interesting items.

My main interest was the PvP here but it just seems incredibly badly planned. There is world PvP with a flagging system for same faction but its a quick toggle even just after killing someone… you would think there would be a certain period after toggling that you are still vulnerable. The karma system sounds interesting, and jailing for the worst offenders but I would just expect most people to leave their client running while away or at work. There is little consequence there except for being able to play some amusing mini games.

I’m not sure about trading and PvP but from last I heard the safe zones had been extended enough to make the whole thing mostly moot. You can pretty much trade with impunity, no risk no worries and no point for those wanting to create a little conflict. The pirate faction still hasn’t evolved much either so I hope you like one of the smallest spaces available and the most restricted gameplay.

And the third continent is mostly unfinished, barely even started if you consider the original design for it which was a massive space for player run factions to contest space on. To control resources, to siege opponents and create some sort of lord and steward type social situation.

The part that does make it interesting is something it seems developers are only now starting to learn. Fluff is an important feature. An endless level or dungeon grind and a focus on combat and gear is a recipe for burnout. It is the fluff that creates the barrier between that content, that lets people branch out towards different activities, to collect other things and something that creates a far more worldly experience.

The open world housing system really is just amazing. Laying down a claim on the world, a place to call your own is a very important emotional part of creating a connection to a game. It’s something that makes you want to strive for more; a bigger house and more decorations as well as keeping up with maintenance. The cute little garden packages are another part that creates daily patterns more meaningful than a simple go here or kill that daily. And then there are a whole range of other features like sailing, diving and treasure hunting, community building, mount training and many other cosmetic features.

I like these features a lot but they are more disconnected mini games rather than something apart of a world. It’s another linear mmo selling itself under the pretence of being sandbox just because it has more fluff than most. If your into that sort of stuff great, it will be a decent experience but I think those going in with certain expectations are going to be rather dissapointed.

#Archeage #rant

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8 thoughts on “An Archeage Annoyance

  1. I’m waiting to see just how cleanly they balanced their PvP… Or not. Maybe you might know if you watched any videos or caught up with any news?

    Is it like a WoW system where high levels and high tiered gear means exponential stats that leave low levels with no chance whatsoever when PvPing?

    Because I forsee a lot of crying if so. All the wannabe peaceful farmers and homesteaders are gonna get ganked by one rich griefer with cash to burn, the griefer’s gonna chuckle and AFK in jail for his 13 hours, then come out and do it all again, profiting from everything the game rules allow him to steal.

    • Last I saw it wasn’t very balanced with large differences in power between levels. I forsee a lot of qq as well but not for a while as a lot of the world is protected

  2. This post has a serious case of the “other people are liking a thing I don’t like”s! I mean hey, to each their own but for what it’s worth I’ve played for like 20 hours and have not found at all that it’s a linear game. Most people I know in the Alpha did the quests up until about level 15-20 (out of 50 levels) and then just broke off into doing their own thing, whether it’s exploring or trading or farming or ship battles or crafting or whatever. Perhaps I don’t understand the proper definition of sandbox, but that doesn’t seem very linear to me!

    Jeromai, gear does not make a whole of a lot of difference, but leveling one’s skills up absolutely will. It will be interesting to see how the PvP works in practice, for sure. I don’t think ganking is going to be a huge problem though if people want to avoid PvP — half of the zones in the game are pretty carebear, and an aspiring ganker will have to travel for a long time by both boat and hang glider just to find level 6 John Q Newbie.

    This all being said, I’m never in favor of early access and I think the folks paying $150 are being silly.

    • Haha, that’s definitely what this is but what better reason to rant is there?
      Personally I don’t see how that’s any different than a game like Rift, you can hop off the levelling train and craft, build a house, fish, hunt shines or whatever. In ESO I stopped for a time and just gathered stuff and crafted.

      There is little interdependence between the components. It will still be an economy focused on end game gear that once attained will lose all meaning and everything else is another collectible. I just don’t believe it’s the second coming of sandbox some people expect.

      I still thinks it’s going to be a decent game though and if this alpha was a decent price I’d probably be in there as well.

    • Will be keenly following any reports along this vein. I don’t like jumping into a game unless I know how the whole ‘ecosystem’ (economy, pvp, stats, who’s important who’s not, etc.) works, so to speak, and whether I’m ok with it or not.

      Take Eve Online. In theory, high-sec is safe. Ish. In practice, if someone decides whatever riches you’re foolish to haul around is worth the loss of his throwaway ship, he could just jump you if he felt like it.

      Archeage worries me a little by including so many systems for conducting ‘criminal acts’ and the only punishment being a light slap on the wrist (by my outside take, anyhow.) If you allow it via game design, they will come. And you will attract elements who fancy playing ‘dark side’ that way. Whether the game supports the formation of ‘light side’ pvp protectors and/or allows victims to cooperate/group together and repel the black hats (who, mind you, are just as likely to group up and be more powerful, since they’re focused on those skills and stats that allow them to gank), will be key to how long the sandbox can function without going into a pvp death spiral.

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  4. I am playing ArcheAge since a few days. It is an unfair, mindnumbingly grindy game, a complex, demanding timesink. Farmville in CryEngine 3 … I love it! After all my mmo years I became tired of guilds and organisations, playing mostly solo here and there – or with a few old friends who showed up from time to time.

    Suddenly I am actively contributing to an international (north american, scandinavian, australian, german) 400+ members guild (in alpha!), raiding world bosses in the morning, giving PvP backup for trade runs in the evening and running the party-of-3 dungeons at night. I have never met or known any of these guys before, but when they call out late at night to do a banana run (bananas can be sold with quite some profit at the other continent), I am there.

    I am mostly farming azalea and narcissus to craft the viscous oil for creating plate armor (I am only 26 atm), sometimes I throw in some turmeric for quick coin. I have yet to build a ship or a house, but I am already forming pirate ship blockades on the high seas to secure the farming routes. They often come from above on gliders so you got to be ready for a quick dogfight (you need to know: gliders can shoot smaller missiles).

    The game has hit me by surprise, I would not have thought that a game may hit me like this again. ArcheAge is definitely not a game for everyone. But you need to play it to know it ;-P

    • That actually sounds pretty awesome. To be honest I’m more upset at the game just because it didn’t leave up to its original design. That game sounded like an amazing sandbox, what we got still looks like a good themepark with plenty of awesome features but there is a part that’s still sad.

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