Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Vindictus, Bloody good fun.

So, what is Vindictus?

For you who live under a rock, Vindictus is a free-to-play 3rd person action-MMORPG, developed by Nexon, a Koren development studio and ported over to the west by Nexon-America.

It's currently post release, even thou it still appears in many ways to be still in beta.
Namely two of the five playable characters/classes have yet to be released, among other minor content issues that have yet to be ported.
However at it's core, it is basically a full fledged MMO experience.

(do note however that it's limited to ONLY north-America and Canada)
(this can be easily circumvented via proxy servers)

Now why is this even worth talking about? Why play this game?
Simple, it's hands on, engaging, free and most importantly, just good dirty fun.

You play as a mercenary, one of currently three playable characters, which are basically your classes in this game. And yes, you can customize your character like in any other MMORPG.

You have:
Lann: A dual wielding sword user, who slashes his way to victory with fast sweeping attacks and quick movements to duck in and out of battle.
Fiona: The meat shield of the group, who sports a strong shield and defensive capabilities, with powerful direct attacks.
Evie: The spell caster, wielding either devastatingly powerful spells, blasting her foes at long range, or getting dirty with a giant scythe, sweeping over the battlefield with wide reaching attacks.

Unlike most MMO's, where you watch you character attack or cast spells as you tab-123456 your way to victory, Vindictus has you in direct control of your every movement, which is pinnacle to success.

Instead of using a skill that allows you to block or avoid a skill, you have to actively dodge it.
Instead of auto-attack and auto-targeting, you have to actively run up and smash you enemies face in with either light or heavy attacks.
You have to time attacks as to not get hit.
You need to avoid getting hit at all times.
You have to pay attention as not to get surrounded, etc.

All of combat demands that you sit up and pay attention, and that is something that I find very difficult to find in this industry.
But beyond all that, it's just plain fun.
If this was it, while nice, not really all that interesting.

But it doesn't stop there.
You can break or pick up just about anything (except the walls), and use it as a makeshift weapon.
You can grab your foe any perform various grappling moves on them.
You have several secondary weapons to hurl at you enemies, including spears and explosives.

Combat is very improvising and intuitive, you can just wing it and do all sorts of crazy stuff, just for the fun of it.
And when bosses swing around, it can be a really challenging experience, and never needlessly difficult..... which is exceedingly rare.
Everything can be done solo as long as your careful.

All in all, awesomely fun combat.

As for the rest of it.... it's not bad, it's not bad.
Vindicuts doesn't go for the large, immersive world like many other MMO's do, but rather you work from this one small town, doing lots of odd jobs for the residences that you will really get to know, as a bigger story unfolds around you.

The town acts as a hub where you can talk to people and get quests and items.
You then go to the port and take missions via boats, which are instanced areas that you can do on your own or with a small group. You can also wait on the boat, or join anyone who is waiting on theirs to form an PUG. Your not sitting around in town going LFG, just jump right in and have fun.
Quick and simple.

The missions themselves again are instanced, so no one is going to ruin your fun or take your loot. The length of each mission is nice and short, anywhere from 5-25 minutes typically.
So you really are able to jump right in and have fun in nice short doses, and make some actual progress, which is very nice indeed.

Character creation is while a tad unremarkable, is still effective.
Graphics wise it is very, very pleasant to look at.
Sound and music is memorably, and rarely seems out of place.

Overall, I think this is a fantastic game, esp being free and all.
As far as first impressions go, this has left a very good one on me.

If you haven't already played this game and you like action games, go play it right now.


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