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News & Features Discussion  » Vanguard: Saga of Heroes: Vanguard Re-Review

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91 posts found

Managing Editor

Joined: 7/08/05
Posts: 6729

OP  1/30/09 8:42:59 AM#1

New Reviewer Stephanie Morrow writes this long in the waiting re-review of SOE's Vanguard: Saga of Heroes.

Vanguard Screen

It’s closing in on two years since Vanguard:SOH was released, and as most people probably remember it was an epic fail of a launch. There was unfinished content along with huge performance issues that ranged from graphic glitches to high system requirements. Very few good things were spoken about the game at the time. A lot can change in two years, especially when you have a team of dedicated developers working on it and a community that is willing to stand by no matter what happens.

Needless to say, Vanguard is not the game it once was at release. While it is certainly not perfect, countless issues have been addressed. Content has been added, bugs have been fixed. The community may have shrunk since the initial first few months, but the passion that everyone displays for ‘their’ game is astounding. Galleons and fishing have made their way into the game, something players have been clamoring about for quite some time now, as well as numerous other additions which I’ll get into more detail about further along.

Read the Vanguard Re-Review

Jon Wood
Managing Editor


Novice Member

Joined: 1/08/05
Posts: 639


1/30/09 9:08:52 AM#2

For those wanting a PvE game i dont know that there is another game close to this.  Like the re-rievew says theres improvements constantly.

Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master.

George Washington


Novice Member

Joined: 8/19/08
Posts: 124

1/30/09 9:24:39 AM#3

In terms of PvE MMORPGs, there is nothing that surpasses Vanguard, the size of the world and the amount of content is mind boggling.

I just wish there was a bit more PvP.

Tried: WoW
Played: EQ, EQII, AO, SWG, NGE-SWG, LoTRO, WAR, Vanguard, Eve, WWIIOL, Guild Wars, Darkfall, AoC.
Playing: DAoC.
Waiting For: SW:TOR.


The Furniture

Joined: 7/04/04
Posts: 2213

1/30/09 9:26:12 AM#4

How beautifully written. If all the articles on this site were of such high quality, then people might start to take seriously again

I didn't know they'd finally added galleons at last. I'm surprised they didn't wave the flags for it, or maybe they did and I missed it.

I'm gonna install and fire up the game just to have a peek.

I've got very fond memories of Vanguard. I loved and played the game so much that I have a level 50 in each adventuring class, 2 tradeskill classes, and a diplomat, but after all that, there was precious little else to do if (like me) you don't like raiding.


Novice Member

Joined: 1/21/06
Posts: 23

1/30/09 9:34:35 AM#5

I played Vanguard at release and although beautiful and showing lots of promise, it was way too buggy for my tastes.

A year later, my account was reactivated for free and I went back and played the game.  A lot of problems had been fixed.  I was amazed at how beautiful the game actually was and it played much more smoothly.  Ultimately, however, I did not keep the account active.

Vanguard has a lot going for it.  It's beautiful, there seems to be a lot to do, but it also feels like it is missing something.  Some hook, that just didn't keep me in the game.  I honestly, don't know what it is.  Perhaps it is the low population of the servers?  I always go back to WoW, most likely because of the friends I have in the game.

If my account was reactivated again, I would try it out again.  If it inspired me, I could definitely end up staying.  However, I feel it is just missing something, something I fail to pinpoint.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/15/06
Posts: 1359

1/30/09 9:39:47 AM#6

I ended up leaving Vanguard after complaining about some obvious bugs that weren't fixed on general chat, and got reemed for it. I think it's natural for a newish person to ask why this or that hasn't been fixed, but I guess the community didn't think so.

Either way, that's fine, because I really enjoy WoW and it's a much better game than Vanguard. It may not have a huge seemless world, boats and what not, but it has atmosphere and all the little things that matter more than boats. WoW certainly isn't a game I'd play for years, but it's definitely kept me entertained for 4 months so far.

Good luck with Vanguard you all. I liked the game, but the population was too small, and the community too agressive for my tastes.

MMORPG's w/ Max level characters: DAoC, SWG, & WoW

Currently Playing: WAR
Preferred Playstyle: Roleplay/adventurous, in a sandbox game.


Novice Member

Joined: 3/22/04
Posts: 17

1/30/09 9:48:59 AM#7

Vanguard is stil my favorite game, I liked pretty much everything about the game except the bugs and technical errors of course. What made me leave in the end was the very very low playerbase on the PVP server.


Am I right that there is only one pvp server left and it's (hopefully) FFA pvp ? What are the current player numbers on there? Is it worth coming back to it?


Old School

Joined: 1/03/04
Posts: 7864

1/30/09 9:57:43 AM#8

The sum of 2 years is that the game plays smoother and not much else new.  Odds are the 4 year re-review will be the exact same thing.


I really wish this game had more resources to expand the content, because it might just surprise the market with a decent comeback. 






Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/08/07
Posts: 112

1/30/09 10:10:00 AM#9

Really nice review! Two thumps up! Can't wait for the content to arrive in the game, gonns be great!

To all of you who complain about lack of end-game content, there's atleast 2(?) new raids dungeons coming up and a level cap increase to lvl 55, so I guess there's something big on the way.


Apprentice Member

Joined: 12/08/07
Posts: 112

1/30/09 10:11:21 AM#10
Originally posted by Wolfkrone

In terms of PvE MMORPGs, there is nothing that surpasses Vanguard, the size of the world and the amount of content is mind boggling.

I just wish there was a bit more PvP.


There's a PvP-arena on the way.


Novice Member

Joined: 6/13/04
Posts: 1108

1/30/09 11:11:52 AM#11

I was in original beta and 3 months after launch. I came back 6 weeks ago and am having fun. Got my wife to join me. One of the particular strength of this game not emphasised enough is the very high quality player base.It's one of the real reqasons to play and stay.


Advanced Member

Joined: 5/28/04
Posts: 675

1/30/09 11:22:29 AM#12

"When you leave the Isle of Dawn you may feel slightly overwhelmed. You’re not given a huge amount of direction on where to go next but for some players that’s just fine."

Yep, that actually says it pretty well.  Telon is a little too-wide open for my tastes. I prefer going from quest hub to quest hub with little nudges to move me around.  I didn't find that in Vanguard and unfortunately that was the main deciding factor for me.  If you don't have that sort of hangup, you can really enjoy the game now.  The tutorial is very well put together and if the rest of the game was ever linked together like that I'd probably resub.  It is most definitely NOT the same game as it was at launch and that's a good thing.


Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/19/04
Posts: 633

1/30/09 11:30:19 AM#13

I like the game, but when I went back to the free time offered me after like 8 months of not playing, I found it to be worse technically. I wasn't having any lag or hitching problems at all 8 months ago on high settings, but now, I had an irritating amount of hitching at any video level.

I only quit it before because of time, and was tempted to start playing again, but unfortunately the renewed issues will keep me away. The problems were everywhere for me and not just the island.

For me, they somehow took a step backwards. Oh well. Hopefully not everyone will have the same problems because it is a good and fun game.

  User Deleted
1/30/09 11:57:58 AM#14
Originally posted by Vynt

I like the game, but when I went back to the free time offered me after like 8 months of not playing, I found it to be worse technically. I wasn't having any lag or hitching problems at all 8 months ago on high settings, but now, I had an irritating amount of hitching at any video level.

I only quit it before because of time, and was tempted to start playing again, but unfortunately the renewed issues will keep me away. The problems were everywhere for me and not just the island.

For me, they somehow took a step backwards. Oh well. Hopefully not everyone will have the same problems because it is a good and fun game.


That is how I felt exactly as well. I don't know what they have done with the last update. But they have pretty much undone all the hard work on performance from the previous year. 

About a year ago I was actually impressed in how good the performance was, but left because of very low population (wich is still an issue today and keeps hurting the game).

But now it is almost like I am back since launch when it comes to performance. So they really screwed up something with the last update. That is for sure. 


Elite Member

Joined: 1/06/05
Posts: 18280

1/30/09 12:25:49 PM#15
Originally posted by Farandir
Originally posted by Wolfkrone

In terms of PvE MMORPGs, there is nothing that surpasses Vanguard, the size of the world and the amount of content is mind boggling.

I just wish there was a bit more PvP.


There's a PvP-arena on the way.


Also there is a FFA pvp server, so I don't see why anyone could complain.

I have the graphics practically at max and the world really is beautiful. I would even venture, in some places, LOTRO beautiful. However, there are some, what I call, "EQ II" moments where you will see caves or architecture that just looked slapped together. Sort of like seeing a part of a cave that is much brighter than the surrounding material.

For players who want a more exploratory type game I highly recommend Vanguard. I have a sub just so I can wander around and do a few things. In some cases it is hard to get things accomplished as the travel distances can be quite far at times, but this is also a perk as you actually get to experience traveling over the land instead of just being ported from one spot to another without any sense of the world between your points.

And of course you can go just about everywhere. from my limited experience, nothing keeps you from going to an area and being slaughtered if that is what you want. Conversely, (and once again) in LOTRO I saw a door at the side of an area where there are orcs (the entrance to lothlorien) and when I clicked on it I got the "you do not have the coressponding quest" message.

This is just heart breaking as it really brings out the artificial nature of a game world. Vanguard doesn't seem to have that type of thing.

There are rift stones that care you great distances but all in all, it is an exploration game. As far as the lack of end game raids, that is a hard one. Does mythical end game really always need to be about raiding?


Novice Member

Joined: 5/20/04
Posts: 825

You only live once... make it count!

1/30/09 12:26:56 PM#16

Vanguard = Today's Everquest. Excellent PvE game with a wide-open world that doesn't lead you completely around by the nose. The level of customization on characters is great, and the graphics/immersion factor is top notch (especially in revamped areas, including the trial).

The only thing I found lacking in Vanguard was a sense of story, which is why I currently choose LotRO for my monthly $15 payment.

I had played the game in beta and hated it; came back and tried it again a few months ago and found a very enjoyable game. I think it is worth giving the trial a shot, if nothing else.


Novice Member

Joined: 6/30/04
Posts: 120

1/30/09 12:37:17 PM#17

Is the game UO silled based (you use a skill, you raise it), or WoW level based (earn xp to improve)?


What's the death penalty?


On the PvE servers, what will the PvP arenas be like?  Will there be any type of rewards?


Curious, thanks.


Novice Member

Joined: 4/10/08
Posts: 1

1/30/09 12:46:49 PM#18

The tragedy of Vanguard is the lack of dev resource. EQ2 gets a big fat expansion on a regular basis; if SoE just skipped one of those and sent a bunch of devs over to Vanguard for 6 months I'm sure they could really move it on. Plus, of course, they need to market it then in the same way as EQ2 to get the subscriber numbers up.

Fantastic game and a great 2 years for me. But once you've levelled 2 or more characters to level cap you start to think, do I really want to do that again with the same content?

  User Deleted
1/30/09 3:22:03 PM#19

I've not played V:SOH and don't plan to (I'm sure its a fine game, this is not a hater post) but the article pointed out something that really bugs me in general about the current state of the MMO industry:  Companies release games in pitifully incomplete states and then expect us to pay sub fees while they complete development.  It seems apparent this was the case here and I can tell you it is the case with AoC.

I'm not talking about bugs.  I mean missing content, incomplete content, and barebones content put in as a place holder until they could put the final ver in. Of course take all of that and factor in that the devs are basically going to be finishing the game in a live environment and you can add an insane amout of often ridiculous bugs as well.

If this keeps on happening its going to become, if it hasn't already, an industry standard unless players decide to do something about it.  Seems wrong that the players of the first year or two should pay full price to finance continued development of what should be a complete product.

Personally I won't play any more MMO's unless it comes with a free trial, and the client is free. If they can impress me with that, I'll pay sub fees forever.



Novice Member

Joined: 9/01/08
Posts: 120

1/30/09 3:51:43 PM#20

For those having performance issues, be sure to have the recommended video driver installed.  Here is a link to the VG recommended video driver.

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