Instead of discussing the latest news Trion Worlds has on ArcheAge, we're going to focus on the game itself. Unfortunately though, I still don't have a release date for you! Last week I found my way into the ArcheAge alpha and was finally able to get hands on with it to see what all the rage is from region to region for ArcheAge. Despite all the 1.0 patch nonsense, now I was able to see why everyone in the community has been voicing their opinions so loudly for Trion to hear. I've never played ArcheAge in any other regions, so I went into this experience blind and I'm going to give you new guys an idea of what to expect as well!
Upon starting up ArcheAge I arrived at the decision of four different races, Nuian, Elf, Firran, and Harani. Each with their own unique background and perks. Nuian being the basic human race, also known as the Conquerors of the Continent. Then we've got the secluded elven swimmers, whom are well... elves! But of course, there's always gotta be the one furry race those of us have a desire to play. Look no further than the Firran. The Firran are essentially humanoid cats roaming the wilds attempting to understand their purpose in this world. Last but not least of course is the heroic Harani. Practical, cunning, and efficient laborers. I want Firran, because cats, people!
Claw to earth, blood to water, fang to wind, fur to fire...
Here comes the fun part for those of you that go balls to the wall crazy with customization. While you can't customize your body too much, you can customize your face as much as your heart desires. The creation lets you tweak the width of your nose, the depth of eyes, jaw, and so forth. You can make them look as much as possible like you if you take the time. Or you can just do what I did below.
In the character customization there's a so-so amount of options for the basic things like hair style, eye type, hair color, and so forth. If it turns out you don't want to spend hours in the customization there are also pre-made options. The first time I went through the character customization without realizing I could tweak all the tiny details and ended up choosing different hairstyles, eye types, and what not taking maybe five minutes. So when it comes to the character customization, it's up to you how long you take.
Now that you have your beautiful character, it's time to decide how you're going to be playing ArcheAge. Are you up for ranged combat, melee, magic, summons, curses, etc. It's up to you how you customize your skillsets to create a class of your own. At this point you're given five basic options so you don't end up going into the world without being able to hold your own. As you level very early on you'll unlock the next two skillsets which allow you to arrive at your final epic monstrosity of a class (which can also be swapped at any time for a nominal in-game fee). I personally decided to start myself off with the Archery skillset figuring "Hey, I'm playing alone so I may as well kite my foes as much as possible." Last week Community Manager, Evan Berman and Producer, Victoria Voss got together for a livestream discussing how the skillsets work in creating a class in great detail. With 120 different permutations of the skill system, there are a LOT of options here.
The Themepark is in Town
Since the 1.0 update craze in other regions of ArcheAge people have been worried the sandbox elements have been fleeting inArcheAge. I believe I recall hearing Trion Worlds stating that the beginning of the game has a themepark feel to it with players being able to go crazy with the sandbox elements down the road. The quests, standard as they might be, serve as a lore-based way to open up all the game's systems to you.
Once I started the game past the character creation I found myself set on a basic quest line. Go here, go there, kill this, gather that, in order to get a feel for the game. I haven't gotten too far in ArcheAge, so I haven't had the opportunity to experience the many of the sandbox elements. I only see them hovering off in the distance. I've spoken with players that have said you can jump into crafting right off the bat as long as you have the resources needed. I won't be surprised when I hear a player hit the max level by only crafting, but I don't see them getting those resources without doing some questing to get to a reasonable point. So without a doubt, you'll have to push through the themepark portion of the game to enjoy the sandbox part. Personally, I have no issue with this.
Anyway, one of the things I liked right off the bat with ArcheAge would have to be the environment. Being able to stare off in the distance at a mountain range and knowing I can reach it without an invisible wall blocking me off is great. Fortunately I attained a Snowlion mount for riding gloriously into the sunset. A moment that made me jump was when I was first getting into combat and had this slow earthy creature was wandering along. Having my bow at the ready, I decided why not start popping shots for the first time at this guy. Since he was so sluggish it was easy to kite him and all I could think was I had found my South Park boars to hunt. Next thing you know, what looks like a gopher digging toward me appeared. And then WHAM, a giant earthen of a fist pops out and grabs me. That was when Witchcraft became my second skillset... for safety's sake.
Me killing boars.
Goals to Look Forward To...
Now what am I looking forward to as I journey farther into this world? Honestly, I had to take a break from all the questing as I'm often just wandering back and forth between quest hubs. What I'm really looking forward to is gliding, cars, ships, crafting, housing, and all those sandbox elements! I like the idea of having my own farm with plants and livestock. While I'm sure it'll be a heck of a challenge trying to handle, actually. Then thereare cars and ships. Cars man... cars. How often do you play an MMORPG in a fantasy setting like this, with cars? Something about the cars and navy action sounds incredible to me. I'm still trying to decide whether I'll find myself pillaging defenseless merchants to make a living or defending them.
I apologize for not having the latest entry in the column be last week as our usual schedule is. In order to make up for it, we'll be having the column two weeks in a row including this week. Therefore, you can expect a new article giving you your fix on April 29th!