Impressions on the initial leaked, very unofficial footage from the dress rehearsal on 8/17/2010:
- Hmmm. It seems it would be hasty to come to many conclusions based on this. What I can see that doesn’t seem to be affected by dev hax is promising, but it’s difficult to form a real opinion because of the presence of said hax. Will wait until more videos surface to solidify opinion.
- This has a very action-y feel, which combined with the off-screen cam effect reminds me of DCUO (since I’m not sure I’ve even seen any footage of that game that wasn’t an off-screen cam) and Champions Online. I really liked combat in CO, so I’m not going to complain. It’s no TERA, obviously, but for a “traditional” skill-click MMO it doesn’t seem to “play” like one.
- Also: People are going to hate ANet for “collect harpy glands.” I mean, ANet already described dynamic events that could be started by talking to an NPC Asura (check) who doesn’t have an exclamation point over his head (check) in which he tells you to go collect things (check), but nobody’s going to care or remember that, just like they don’t remember what Mythic actually said about Public Quests, because – collect harpy glands!
- Honestly, charr running on all fours has made me want to roll a charr now. I didn’t think it would have such a visceral effect on me, but I adore it.
- I’m not sure about the Diablo health meter, but the artisanal (is that a word? thanks, Daniel Dociu) UI scores big points with me. I love how everything is sketched in paintbrush strokes. It wasn’t what I expected at all, given the GW1 UI being all smooth edges and Verdana-like fonts.
This morning, after the deluge of more official videos (including the reveal of a Necromancer class, which surprised exactly no-one, though I am sad for mine and Hunter’s sakes that it wasn’t an assassin):
- Ah, so that’s where the colorful world I was expecting had gone to. Yesterday’s video was all washed out and desaturated due to the cam quality.
- I’m trying to think of something to compare this world to. It’s lush and I really like it. It’s somewhere along the continuum of Aion and TERA, I think, though with a considerable touch less Asian inspiration. It’s truly like a Western studio took what was great about that style and made it their own. It’s definitely not evoking a sense of “gritty,” though. Again, since lush is my preference over gritty, I’m okay with that. I can imagine some folks will be disappointed, however.
- Running while casting. Hooray! Again, very action-oriented, it seems. I do really like that.
- Character colored outlines have got to go. I remember that Aion had this, too, and I hated it then as well. I’m positive it will be toggle-able, since ANet is all about options.
- Spell effects are somewhere on the continuum of Aion as well. I thought Aion was too flashy, so this is in my comfort range. My better half – low-fantasy fan that he is – still thinks they’re too flashy for his tastes.
- Divinity’s Reach is enormous, and I have no problem with being able to teleport from one part of the city to another. I ran around Bree quite enough, thank you very much.
- Note: loading screens while teleporting do not equal instancing.
- Enterable buildings!
- Leave it to ArenaNet to make me excited about the possibility of playing a Necro in GW2. I thought that ship had long sailed, but seeing it in gameplay (even without flashy skill videos) has put it back on my radar.
- Edit: I forgot to add one of my biggest observations - character animations. I am incredibly pleased by how smooth the animations are, as this was my biggest fear going into the con. Other games have been letting me down on the animations front, and GW2 is performing most excellently. I am so happy with them!