AION Dependence – The Power Wiki!!

November 11, 2009


With every MMO, there’s a learning curve.  The learning curve can be minutes, and in some extreme cases you never get it, end up frantically pressing random keys, and find yourself hunched over in a corner sobbing like a little boy.  Okay, a little extreme I’ll admit it, but with MMOs releasing today, you can pretty much assume anyone can log in and usually jump right into the game.  Hotkeys are fairly easy to distinguish and you can pretty much figure things out.  AION is no exception to the rule, actually even a little more enhanced.  It’s a big deal to me… I mean I don’t want to have to sit around for hours trying to figure out how to make my character do the hammer, or wave at that hot blond running up the pathway.  I want familiarity (is that even a word?)

AION really does a great job of making you feel at home in the MMO.  The buttons and UI are very familiar to some other games (Cough: WOW, Warhammer, Age of Conan, EQ2) but they take it a step further embedding some very nice add-ons I wanted to touch on today.  Being familiar with the keyboard and hotkey settings is very important to ensure you aren’t spending more time trying to find out how to wield your weapon than actually swinging the thing.

I believe that a large part of me completing a quest is actually trying to figure out where to go.  Sweettits over here wants me to go find Orion the buttmuncher and kill some pigs for him.  #1 it’s not like I even know who this guy is & it’s not like I have a GPS unit in-game to help me locate these things.  Well, AION actually does….in a sense.  AION embeds this nice little system of linkable words.  YOu click on the word, it opens up another little descriptive text box and you can continue on and it usually will place a ticker on your map of exactly where you can find the location of what you are looking for(in this case pigs for Mr. Buttmuncher).  In extreme cases though, it will tell you that your just too far away and can’t mark the map, but that’s okay because in the Menu options, there’s actually a link to the POWER WIKI!  Sounds…..powerful….    Seriously though, this WIKI is pretty much full of every quest available, detailed information like the coordinates, description of the quest, and what you need to complete it.  It’s like having your own encyclopedia at a couple of clicks of the mouse.  It’s very beneficial and handy when you are trying to power your way through 50 levels.

pigsMan what has become of us.  We’ve gotten in such a damn hurry to get to the end of things that we actually have had to incorporate in-game pinbuttons, in-game wikis, and pretty much a golden road to the location of a quest.  What happened to the good ol’ days of asking others in game…or catch this  ACTUALLY READING THE QUEST AND TRYING TO FIGURE IT OUT YOURSELF!!   Now you have GPS and coordination assistants to help you locate these things.  It’s like we’re paying $15.00 a month to be led around like sheep.  Really…think about it.  Isn’t part of the game trying to figure out the unknown.  Have we gotten THAT lazy where we have to depend on someone holding our hand the whole way.  People bitch about our dependence on the government, and it all starts here; in our local MMOs!  I’m just saying!


The Age of AION – AverageJoe is Back Baby!!

November 11, 2009


Well my next adventure awaits me!  AverageJoe has moved onto AION, the newest expansion from NC Soft.  Now NC Soft is not a virgin to MMORPGs, in fact have countless titles that include, but are not limited to, Guild Wars, Tabula Rasa, City of Heroes, and of course the Lineage games.  I am a little worried about the US support offered since NC Soft is actually a Korean company, but we’ll see where things go.  But until an issue really emerges, I’ll continue to look on with a positive mentality and try to enjoy AION just as much as I can!

AION combines PVP and PVE in a concept the developers simply state as PvPvE (that took me like 3 tries to type that out).  Try saying that 10 times as fast as you can….. haha I knew you couldn’t.  So basically it’s a combination of PVE (Player vs Environment) with PVP elements (Player vs Player) to enhance your gameplay.  I haven’t experienced the PVP as of yet, but I am looking forward to seeing it in the next few days.  You can bet that I will be updating you all on how it is.

I won’t bore you with all the details on AION, there’s many things that make AION different from other MMOS, and many that are the same.  Anyway, let’s start!!!

Pretty much started just like any other MMO would… right in front of ol’ boy.  You know who I’m talking about.  Some new quest giver that basically tells you to give 4 of something, come back and then pushes the puck to the next guy.  There you continue to learn the basics; a little adventuring, a little gathering, a little navigating… blah blah same old crap.  AION is no different here, but does offer a really cool tool.  AION has this really enhanced quest wiki built in.  So you literally click a highlighted name or object, it pulls up exactly (in most cases) where the update is.  So at first I was running around actually reading (seriously I was reading the quests at first) the lore, trying to understand what the game was all about.  But soon, I found myself pretty much clicking through the text as soon as I could to get the quest, to pull up the in game quest help, to complete it as soon as I can…rinse and repeat, rinse and repeat, rinse and repeat.  What game is this again?  ah…nm

UI is pretty good.  I am not having alot of the same issues others seem to have with low FPS, constant disconnects, and crashes.  I did have 2 screen freezes in about an hour until I changed my graphic settings and didn’t have the issue any longer.  I am running AION on my laptop with a GeForce GO 7900Gs with 2GB of memory.  I also installed Win 7 64bit.  I literally run it just fine.  I connected my laptop with a DVI connector to my 31 inch LCD and it looks awesome!!!  It was running a little hot, so I went ahead and put a fan up to it to help cooling.  Other than that, it’s pretty sweet!!

Anyway, so I grind through the first few levels, figure out how to obtain skill upgrades, score a couple of “GREEN” rare items, and complete as many quests I can as quickly as I can.  I also found myself harvesting every (tradeskill I assume) node I can find.  Aria, Iron…  so hopefully this helps me in the near future as I assume there is some crafting element included in the game.  I ran into a couple of bot farmers that literally put up shop right in the first town I came to.  AION has this really cool feature called a “private store” where you can (I guess) set up shop anywhere.  Really cool feature, but not cool to see “RHGWYRTPSLK” selling me shit I can’t even afford (or even know what the hell it is).  But if I ever need 1M cash or powerleveling from 30-40, I know where to find it.

Bots seems to be a big issue in the game.  There’s been a lot of bitching and complaining on the forums about it, so I do worry a little bit about what’s to come soon.  I remember the pretty major problems that SOE had with bots and gold farmers, so I hope NC Soft can learn from this and stop it soon.  Hopefully it doesn’t ruin the game like some say they are.

I rolled up a Cleric (surprised huh?) because I usually don’t like to be in a situation where I can’t help myself or throw in a heal where needed and things seem to be rolling along just fine.  It’s a little challenging, I have to heal myself… but it’s not so hard I can’t complete my tasks.  I went from 1-8 last night in about 3 hrs and I am really looking forward to another session tonight.  Maybe I’ll get my wings!!

Aion White Wings copy