But all of that just covers the PvE gameplay - one of the biggest selling points for AoR and its gameplay is the fact player vs player, or Realm vs Realm as it is usually referred to in the game, is seamlessly integrated into the game's main Core mode. While as stated you can choose to play on an Open RvR server, the more popular Core mode has a setup where most areas of maps will be free from the threat of other players attacking you, but specific designated areas will be flagged for RvR, which
means once you step into the zone, you're free game. However, each tier in the game also has its own RvR 'scenario', which is a separate smaller map you can join at any time (after waiting in a queue for the next round), basically acting as a team death match mode within the game.
While AoR certainly has a very fleshed out Player vs Environment component, there is no doubting that the RvR elements to the game were also very key for Mythic, so gamers who would prefer to spend most of their time battling against other players will find quite a lot of action and features here. In fact, your character even has its own level/rank specifically for RvR, known as the 'Reknown' rank. This is a separate level and XP system from the main PvE one, granting the ability to spend points on
specific abilities you can deploy on the RvR battlefields, which are spread out over most maps, featuring strongholds and outputs to fight for control over. In many ways, the RvR/PvP elements to Age of Reckoning are like an entirely separate game within the game, offering a change of pace for those who seek it.
When you sit back and look at it, it's really quite hard to fault the gameplay in AoR at all. While much of the game is unsurprisingly based on tried and tested formulas that are not daring or risky at all, the areas where the game does offer something in the way of unique qualities such as RvR seems to be just as sturdy and well implemented, combining for a very solid MMORPG experience. There is always a lot to do, a lot to see, and plenty of fun
fault that. While I'm sure a MMORPG gamer much more savvy than myself will find a couple of faults here and there, throughout my time with the game very few negative experiences were had. I guess if I had to complain about something, it would be the occasional glitchy quest, and perhaps the fairly predictable NPC enemy AI, which makes it easy to coax targets away from packs, but really, Age of Reckoning is an extremely solid game with few bolts that need tightening.
Visually the game isn't anything too special but then the MMORPG genre isn't usually considered to be a pioneer in PC gaming graphics, nor do most MMORPG gamers expect as much, so the fact AoR isn't DX10 rendered eye candy isn't really a very big deal. Of course, the positive with this is you won't need a killer gaming PC to play this game. With this said though, it isn't like the game looks bad - the environments add to the atmosphere nicely, changing with good variation from area to area and not just
relying on any one theme throughout. Perhaps more important than the graphical quality however is the user interface, which is not only well implemented with its floating window based design but also highly user-customizable, allowing you to tailor your screen to your own liking. For a game as deep and complex as AoR, it's a good thing you can shift through screens and boxes with ease and efficiency.
EA and Mythic have teamed up to produce quite a MMORPG with Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning This is a savagely competitive market and it's typically unlike many other genres where a gamer will buy a few competing titles - with subscription fees and the likes, many MMORPG gamers may be more inclined to stick with one title at a time. So, with this in mind, Age of Reckoning certainly has its work cut out for itself to compete with the big boys, but with the depth and quality on offer
here, it shouldn't have any trouble shooting towards the top of the MMORPG world and becoming a favorite of many worldwide. Whilst it's true much of the game is fairly traditional and not overly new from that standpoint, when it's done as well as this, you don't need to reinvent the wheel. Provided the so far exceptional support in the form of servers and updates continues, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning should be a high priority for any MMORPG gamer that may be looking for a new game to try out.
Review system specifications
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600
Mobo: MSI P965 Platinum S775
RAM: Corsair PC2-5300 4GB (1GB x 4) DDR2
Video: Gigabyte 8800GTS 320MB (Thanks )
Driver: Nvidia Forceware 174.74
OS: Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit
Settings: 1280x1024 (if supported), 4x AA, 16x AF
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