In Vanguard: Saga Of Heroes, you'll face the challenges of a war torn world. Enter a vast, detailed world of swords and sorcery, of dragons and knights, of fiery swords and chests overflowing with treasure. Undead threats and elemental menaces are encroaching, and the land is in desperate need of heroes. Your journey into this world, and towards becoming a hero, begins now. Join a community of thousands of players online as you traverse a breathtaking landscape on the back of a dragon as you explore the grandeur of a world designed by the seminal fantasy artist Keith Parkinson. Create and customize your character from 19 races and 15 professions. Combat fierce opponents with a groundbreaking dynamic combat system that forces you to react to your opponents as you tie together devastating combinations of attacks. Challenge awaits the boldest of heroes! Talk your way to the top - As a diplomat, cunning words are your most powerful weapon as you curry favor in centers of power Interactive tradeskills - Collect essential materials and use skills such as blacksmithing, alchemy and ship building to create valuable and powerful items Make Telon feel like home by staking your claim on a piece of land and furnishing your own house with unique items
A vast and detailed world: Explore two large continents and an archipelago riddled with dungeons and adventures.
Create and customize your character: In a world of thousands, carve your own unique destiny and appearance choosing one of 19 different races from Orcs and Goblins to Dwarves and Elves.
15 professions to choose from: Choose from one of 15 exciting professions including Paladin, Ranger, Sorcerer, Psionicist, Bard, and Rogue.
Dynamic reactive combat system: Build chains of special attacks and reactions with Openers, Bridges, and powerful Finishing moves
Dozens of unique mounts: With dozens of unique mounts to collect, you can race into battle on your warhorse, command the skies on the back of your dragon or join friends and embark on a sea-based adventure to discover faraway lands.
Missed the mark I was in beta before this released, and I could tell that this game was not ready for market, but due to the rushed released it was marketed as is with the hype.
After a year I decided to putchase this to see what happened with the game as well as to see if things have been fixed.
If you have a computer that can handle the graphics then this is a stunning game. I personally enjoy the healer classes, and these new healing classes were a breath of fresh air, and this is something that I hope developers look into creating for future MMO's. The flying mounts look wonderful, and are alot of fun.
Cons: The crafting system I found confusing and too much of a time sink to figure out with my limited playtime. The boats look great, but you will need to run a gamut of research to learn the in's and outs of how to do this. Even after all of this time for them to be able to modify and update this game there are still so many bugs that you still feel like the game is in a beta stage. Quests are bugged, and you become stuck quite often. The community is so small that there is no quest look-up's available, and very few people are ever on. (even if the server says medium) The group user interface was more than a con, it seemed like there was little to no thought put into it. There is no assist system unless you make a macro and change it each time you have a new individual tanking. Chunking for this game is far from a smooth process as you lag for about 30 sec to 1 min before the chunk will load. The quest log is confusing, and difficult to understand for someone that just starts in the game. Character creation is soo limited it's pitiful. You have 4 faces for each race, four hair styles so being unique or semi unique is not an option within this game.
Had they given themselves another 1-2 years before release to have all of the developers truley dedicate their time to polishing this game, and getting userability feedback this would have been the game of the third generation. I would recommend deveopers to take a look at some of their ideas within Vanguard to see about applying their ideas into a real 3rd generation MMO, and also learn a lesson from this MMO's failure. Do not rush out a product that is not ready, and make reasonable deadlines for your own development cycle. ...more info
Vanguard Beta Part Two I won't bore you with all of the background on Vanguard (VG), you can read that most anywhere. I bought VG after a close friend had told me of their experiences and that I should try it out.
First, the good. VG is a huge world, with three separate continents to enhance your experience. Lots of different classes and races, character design down to eyebrows, cheeks, etc. I believe that this game has made the best Paladin class I've ever played. You can level in three different categories: adventuring (the normal killing monster method), diplomacy (an in game card game that I hated), and crafting (making items to sell and use yourself).
VG is NOT for everyone. If you like to solo more than grouping, I'd say you need to be careful what classes you play (Necro's solo well; Clerics don't). This game pushes you to group. The game as it is requires a fairly high end system to run it. Travel is very lengthy when compared to other MMO's.
VG needs more work. Why do I say that? Having played in betas before, it has that same feel still. Zoning between areas will always turn off your torch, can make your horse disappear, can drop you from the game, takes forever, etc. Huge swaths of land have nothing on them, just dead space. Helmets have no graphics yet. This last patch refigured the bonuses on gear above level 30 or so, the end result is all of the crafting tools I was using are now no longer useable by me at my level ... sigh. Crafting complications post patch have gone thru the roof I'm told, I can't verify that since I have no crafting tools anymore that work ... sigh. Several quests were bugged in at least one stage. The Auction House is not as detailed as other mmo's and has less options. The mail system charges you a fee to send items which I found annoying.
VG has a lot of promise and could really benefit from several months of work, but can it survive to do that with a paying user base it it now? Only time will tell....more info
Go elsewhere The game itself is flawed and buggy. There are major lag issues. It's not all bad as there are a few well thoughtout aspects in the game. Unfortunately, early players found ways to hack in-game gold and other monies so the economy is way off center. They may have worked out some of their issues but I wouldn't bank on it....more info
The Best of the Best Read this full review before buying:
First, the game is insane. I've played DOZENS of MMORPG through my life, starting from DOOM and rolling through all genres, maturity levels and styles. This is the new generation, and it has been a LONG time since a game captured my heart and attention like this one.
Now the warning:
This is breaking on the scene and is a bit rough on the edges, it was launched in a rush and thus still has bugs. Additionally, it requires ALL of the top specs of todays technology (RAM, Video Card, Sound). If your system is old, I do not suggest buying it, if you are impatient and/or would like a completely polished game then this isn't it.
If you have a good computer, and/or are willing to buy a new Video Card (this is the biggest item most will have to upgrade), and are ok with a few bugs, then this game is for you. The best way to put it, is you are looking at a game that will be the best of the best in the coming months/years....more info
Awesome game with alot of potential The game is quite massive and time consuming to download all the game data and patches. However, once you get it all loaded up and actually start playing the game you forget all thoughs minor details. The graphics are superb and the community is very supportive. At first I thought the game was deserted, yet it turns out the lands are just so massive that its rare to run into anyone except in the towns. Yet if you do happen upon someone they'll almost always buff you without even having to ask. If you ever have a question you can just talk over the main channel and everyone will pitch in until the question is answered. The plus side to this game is many of the players are at least in there later teens (usually keeping the stupid your mom taunts and debates to a minimum)making the chats much more enjoyable then other online games I've been apart of. Overall a killer game to be apart of, just keep in mind your going to need a top level gaming console to meet even the bare req.'s of the game....more info
Not for everyone This game is expansive and takes a lot longer to advance. The instant-gratification crowd that has developed thanks to WoW will not like it. In WoW you can quickly level then spend the rest of your life grinding instances over and over in order to get that precious drop.
All MMOs are grinds - it just depends on how you want to do it.
This game has bugs, performance issues, and now is struggling to stay afloat. However, I thoroughly enjoy it and am willing to live with the flaws in order to see what it can become.
In many ways it is a lot like EQ - but you would do best to bring along some friends as the populations are beginning to dwindle a bit....more info
the best yet if you like wow you will like this, if you like eq or eq2 you will like this, if you like ultima online you will like this..
it is hard, complicated at times, tedious, and very rewarding. the races are diverse as are the classes. the lands are expansive and provoke the adventurer in anyone. be prepared to learn alot and play alot, its the best....more info
Amazing Potential This game was worth the purchase. Very immersive and a definite addition to any MMO Gamers schedule. Minor Graphic bugs, but other than that the game is amazing. Seamless Zoning, flying mounts, diplomacy system. Worth the 14.99 a month....more info
Not What I Had Hoped With all the hype about Vanguard the product that arrived at my door was a far cry from the game beta testers talked about. I think it can be a good game when the devs actually finish it. I don't recommend it maybe in a year when its completed and patched. It was a definite let down....more info
Regret My Purchase As an ex-Everquest Player I purchased this game based on the fun that Brad McQuaid, one of the Everquest Developers, brought me. Vanguard is an unimaginative, throw-back to 1999. The graphics are nice but you get them at the cost of an unplayable game with anything other than a Cray Super computer.
The game has a ton of bugs, terrible performance, and a hostile Player base of the very few Players that actually play the game. Run run away from this game. I wish I had. I feel like I was robbed.
Big disappointment after waiting on this game for a while....more info
avoid this one..dont waste your hard earned money I followed this game from beta,I had very high hopes for this game,Its concept is a solid and exciting in theory.But,Vanguard Fails to excite,and its a system hog,It takes 17 gigs of HD.You have to have a very good system to get the graphics up to where its not bland and its fun to adventure in.I originally thought maybe being on Sony's servers would mean,it would be a seamless world,with few crashes,I was wrong!!!The game lag's terrible and I am on FIOS 15mb down 2mb up.I rarely get that kind of lag on EQ2 and even the laggy BF2 is not as bad as this game is,The server boundries are noticed everytime you go thru them which is often because if your in a group and they got a slower connection you find ourself 6-10 secs ahead of the people you were with.This game at this time is a failure,I do however have hope for it,But,I would recommend not buying this game at this time due to what i have said,also I will mention other things that need to be fixed these are not all of them but,a small list... the map is useless,grouping and being able to tell where your group members are,combat system is lame,crashes,I bought the game 5-11 and it is 5-12 and i have crashed 10 times at least.I have a duo core amd processor and 2 gig of ram so should not be crashing at all..
Bottom line,dont buy this game,its a waste of 40 bucks.Get EQ2,WoW or LOTRO or wait for Conan to come out....more info
Warning - this game may not be around much longer Fair warning, recently this game was purchased by Sony Online Entertainment and most of the original developers fired because of poor sales and low subscriptions. This game may be discontinued in the near future so keep that in mind if you are considering buying this product. Vanguard was a very hyped up game that turned out to be a sour lemon....more info
If you liked the original EQ, you will LOVE Vanguard! I played the origanal EQ since it first came out. I tried EQ II when it was first released, but just couldn't get into it. Vanguard FEELS like it is the game EQ II should have been. There are so many nice features to this game that I won't list them all, but let me give you a couple. No more spellbook and no more limit of only nine spells memerized. You get access to all you spells! No more stopping to cast a spell...cast it on the run! No more hard zones! The game is big, it's beautiful....yes you need a powerfull PC to run it well...but the graphics are georgeous! I have been playing it since it came out and I can tell you that this is the game I will be playing for some years to come. ...more info
Least fun MMO I've played Maybe I'm getting jaded, but bleh. Everquest with better graphics. (Or at least in some people's opinions; I personally find the characters rubbery and the landscape to be stuck somewhere in the uncanny valley - it wants to be realistic, but it fails in exactly the wrong way for me to be able to suspend disbelief.)
The combat sphere isn't particularly innovative. You attack something, you hit many buttons, it dies, you repeat. They've added chains, which at least give you a reason to pay attention to the buttons you're squashing, since it's the only feedback you have to let you know when you can use your finishers. Quests are mostly of the "kill X of this" variety.
Crafting is ... an unholy nightmare unless you're the hardcore masochist type. Buttons with the same effect move around from recipe to recipe, not for any reason of convenience, but so it's harder to create bots. Complications may or may not be a pain (it varies from patch to patch as the devs thrash randomly around trying to find a balance).
Diplomacy is the new sphere, but is unfortunately nearly completely undeveloped compared to everything else. What there is of it though is split. Civic diplomacy is mind numbing: find some NPCs and play the same cards over and over and over and over. The quests are some of the best I've seen: they make the world seem alive as you scurry all over the world negotiating and bribing and diplomating. If anything's worth playing for, it's this sphere, especially the racial beginner quests which really give you a sense of the various races sensibilities.
Four months after launch, the client is still buggy as all getout, and when I logged in to see if things had improved (I was one of the eager many there at launch but left in disgust), I still had 3 crashes in the hour and I bit I was on.
On top of this, you've got the community from hell. While there are some good people there, it's rife with "I don't do pickup groups" type personalities, so unless you're moving to Vanguard with a bunch of friends, or are great at meeting people, you're pretty much out of luck in a game where grouping is almost required.
The game shipped early and uncomplete when Sigil ran out of money, and it shows. There's talk of a relaunch with the first expansion (due in a few months), and I'd highly recommend waiting until then if you're interested in giving it a shot. Mostly, I'd recommend another game....more info
Worst online game I've ever played Even with an above average computer, I had to reduce the graphic settings down to a bare minimum, making it so ugly that it was painful to look at. Even then I had terrible lag when I was near a congested area or town. Very very grahpics unfriendly game. The gameplay and quests weren't great either. When my level 4 character died the game spawned me in a place next to much higher level creatures and it was impossible to safely return to the newbie grounds without asking for help. At that point I quit in frusteration and never went back....more info
Well-Conceived Game - Crafting Is Superb First, this game is well-designed, fun and challenging. What makes the game interesting is that the World is huge and there is lots to do and the leveling process does not require as much grinding as other games of this type.
Second, the crafting part of this game is awesome. There are numerous challenges - called work orders - that require lots of patience to complete. The crafter must use different tools and must deal with complications - things that go wrong - by using tools or, for example, reducing the heat of the forge. This is the best crafting game around now by far.
Third, the diplomacy part of the game is challenging and can be lots of fun if you spend time to learn how to do it. It involves playing cards against the computer - and anticipating the computer's next move. The rewards are quests not available to everyone else.
Fourth, the game seems to have lots of players at least on the shards that I play on.
Fifth, some of these reviewers seem to be reviewing beta versions of the game - the game has changed quite a bit since it was released....more info
Love it I got this a little after it came out via SOE's store, downloading took like, 2 days on DSL, but afterwards, I was thrilled! People have to remember, this game has been in the works for a while. It is not 100% finished, but it's a totally online game, so I don't think it ever will be. It'll update as it's player base changes and grows, and new ideas form....more info
Crap! I bought this game with great hopes and I was greatly disappointed. I'll be short here and say that: 1) I felt like I was playing a game made for a 12-year old. 2) I had to deal with multiple game-killing bugs. But the worst was dealing with SONY Online Entertainment's (SOE) billing department. I hate recurring billing, so I used SOE game cards. I would enter a card's code but my account was never credited. After hassling with SOE's billing department (for God knows how long!) to the point where I threatened to report them to the Better Business Bureau, they finally fixed my account's problems. To SOE's credit, they were actually quite apologetic about the mix-up but by that time it was too little too late. I ended up giving the game away to a friend along with two unused SOE game cards. To this day, he has never used it....more info
Best MMO in a long time for some folks Finally another game where everything isn't just handed to you! Death actually means something and you want to avoid it! Not every race can be every class, and that's as it should be IMHO, and yes I know not every race can be every class in WoW, but see the first two comments. If you played EQ original, and DAoC and would like to try a modern game of that type give Vanguard a go. Now I will say you need an up to date machine, or be willing to scale the graphics way back to run this game. There are still lots of bugs, but even with that I prefer this over WoW, Guildwars, or EQ II. The core gameplay is there and the bugs will be ironed out....more info
Vanguard Saga of Heroes The first copy I received the CD key was already being used, so I had to send it back for another. The game still has a few bugs, which can be annoying, but its still playable. Overall I was not impressed and I did not want to continue to play after the first free month....more info
Not enough people to play and insanely uber computer required I was really excited about this game and even played it in beta. Having played WoW, SWG and DDO, I have to say this is probably a pass. I got my character to level 33 and though it can be enjoyable at some points you need a group and it is difficult to find people. I am on one of the most popular servers.
The game also requires _the_ latest hardware to play. I thought I had a pretty uber computer, but the performance is terrible even on the "balanced" setting. I basically had to set it to triangles and squares in some situations...the trees looked like dangling cocoa puffs.
One thing I did learn from this is after they charge your credit card, cancel the game (any game) so when the game time expires you know you are renewing and charging your card. I got stuck with more months than I am interested in. All these games work this way.
I enjoyed WoW alot more, but this was probably better than DDO...more info
Rough Start, Immense Improvement. I AM LEAVING THIS REVIEW HERE TO SHOW WHAT I ONCE THOUGHT TO NOW. THIS GAME IS NOT A PRIORITY FOR SOE IN MY OPINION NOR HAVE THEIR PATCHES BROUGHT NEW, GOOD THINGS; RATHER THEY HAVE MOVED BACKWARDS TAKING AWAY CHARACTER CUSTOMIZATION AND CLASS DEFINING DIFFERENCES. THEY OVERPOWER CLASSES LIKE THE DRUIDS AND SHOW NO SIGN OF REALLY LISTENING TO THEIR CUSTOMER BASE. I HAVE CANCELLED AND STRONGLY WARN ANY POTENTIAL BUYERS THAT YOU ARE BUYING AT EXTREME RISK. THIS GAME HAD POTENTIAL BUT IT ISN'T GOING TO MAKE IT IN THE LONG RUN.
I bought this game on release and was amazed at how bad the performance was at the time. I had a standard range computer for the time and I couldn't run the thing effectively even at the lowest settings, which were awful to say the least, so I quit before my free trial month had even expired.
Fast forward to ten months later....
As I waited for a game I would actually enjoy to come out, I re-examined what had already been released out of sheer desperation since Guild Wars was beginning to bore me after I beat the expansion in one week of solid gaming.
I checked them all out again from WoW, to EQ2, to Shadowbane, DAoC, etc. To give you a background on my MMORPG experience I started gaming with Diablo, then Diablo 2 after which I went to EQ1 and absolutely loved it in the late '90s. I moved back to playing Blizzard games for a while with the release of Warcraft III before finally ending up in DAoC where I stayed for years and would still be if they had not completely negated customer service and unbalanced the RvR. I moved on to Guild Wars as a temporary fix until the release of certain games that didn't manage to release and it then became my permanent game as I waited for Warhammer or Age of Conan which I consider the two best options coming out in the future.
Now that said, I am back in Vanguard playing exclusively on the PvP server and I am very impressed at the strides forward they have made since their terrible release.
First of all they have fixed nearly all performance issues that I was having personally. I have an older Pentium 4 processor, 2 gigs of ram, and a 7000 series Nvidia 514MB video card with which I can run the game at the highest settings most of the time. There are areas where you will still encounter some lag such as when you open the doors to structures, when you cross the invisible zone lines known as chunks, and when too many players' avatars appear at once and have to be loaded. They have fixed the worst memory leaks and causes for most of the crashes. All in all I notice no difference in performance or lag in this game when compared to DAoC, WoW, EQ2, and other MMORPGs currently released, but this game is FAR superior in world graphics in my opinion. The developers have already announced more fixes to decrease the performance issues such as decreasing unnecessary bone structures on characters which should decrease loading times and increase framerates etc making PvP more viable for those with lower system specs as well. The future is very bright in this area and the devs are extremely competent in their performance fixes and tweaks so far although they are slow to release said patches. I personally am ok with this as long as progress is made and it is stable when released.
About the graphics, I cannot say enough. It is by far the best part of this game. There are other games out there with good graphics in the MMORPG world, but I think that this one is the best barnone. Even when not set to the highest settings this game is still astounding in its beauty. There are still some cool effects that could be added such as accumulating snow and maybe wind effects, but overall you will not find a more beautiful night sky or better swaying trees. Even the detail of the rocks is outstanding by my estimation and far superior to the cartoon graphics found in WoW and GW.
About PvP options. Let me first clarify that this game was created for PvE. It has a massive landmass with explorable water, mountains, dungeons, cities, and every other kind of landmass you can think of just about. You will be hardpressed to see it all in the first several months you are playing if you don't dedicate insane hours to it; another plus imo. However, if you are like me, Player versus Player combat (PvP) has to be effectively integrated as an option into any game in order for there to be the longevity and capacity to satisfy over the long term. This is the one area this game will need future work on, but don't despair. The PvP server suffices for these things for now. So far PvP is a Free for All (FFA) setup where anyone can be fought and killed anywhere after level 7 and it gets pretty fast and furious too. You may have the invisible Psionicist charm a high level city guard and attack you while never knowing where the Psionicist himself is but knowing that this guard is no regular mob and you will need help to just survive let alone kill him. Or perhaps you run across the ranger, who snipes at you from behind a windmill for incredible bow damage only to switch to dual wielding sword fury when you close the gap. Perhaps you will come across the Shaman who summons pets to serve him or perhaps transforms into a bear and proceeds to tear apart his adversaries healing himself when necessary. The sorcerer may just cook you in two minutes flat or the annoying bard may run circles around you laughing and slowly whittling away your health while she cannot be touched. But be careful for out of no where a great platemail clad Warrior may stride into battle and absorb your damage as though you spat at him before leveling his massive axe upon his target. You will never know the rogue is there until he strikes, and watch out for that plate wearing guy; it isn't another tank (Warrior, Death Knight, Paladin) its a Cleric and he can dish out some serious damage and take it equally well healing all the while. The Necromancer may have recently harvested a dead body and found a unique body part to graft into his abomination to deal out more damage just as he transforms into a lich or wraith and joins the pursuit. Suddenly the whole ground begins to shake and bodies fall around you for the Druid has unleashed an earthquake before the Blood Mage sets his blood to boiling, stopping the druids assualt, and then can begin to help heal the afflicted. But wait, he is intercepted by a huge lesser giant Death Knight who removes his invisibility and shadowsteps to the mage, uttering a word of power and swinging his weapon killing his target instantly. Needless to say, there are options galore for PvP in this game. They just need to balance the classes a bit, which they are actively doing, and they need to add a bit more purpose to it besides just FFA killing. Most player bases these days are crying out for more depth and purpose overall whethere it be defending property that is player built like in Shadowbane, or defending a realm like in DAoC, or castle sieges like one might expect to find in Lineage 2. None of these games has got it completely right yet, but if this game or any other works on this area I think you will see some really good PvP options that will carry the game many years into the future; this game has that potential by my estimation even though it is not there yet.
The downsides to PvP right now are that balance is not where it needs to be yet but they are addressing it. There are definate flavor of the month (FotM) classes like the Shaman, Ranger, and Bard that have unfair advantages in many situations and that simply must be addressed. You won't really notice it much on the PvE servers but you will hate it on PvP when you have to fight those characters and your skills are just not capable of competing against them. PvP deaths don't affect much overall though since the penalty for losing is money, which can be protected by placing it in the bank and not carrying it on you, and infamy points, which function as nothing other than bragging points. This too needs to be addressed as I personally can't stand useless look at me items. I want infamy to serve a purpose of some fashion and until it does I will care very little about it and not consider it an incentive for PvP. You may wonder, well what is the incentive for PvP then? Simple. The rush of adrenaline, the fame, and the ability to uphold certain ideals and exact revenge, honor, and fear amongst the player base. I have seen people who randomnly kill everyone they see and they are sometimes targetted by large guilds and either can't get groups to progress or are killed by nearly everyone since they specialize in making enemies and not friends. That kind of accountability is appealing to me personally.
The population is good, but could be a bit higher since the world is so big. There was a dramatic drop after the games release in this area due to the overall disgust of the general population, but that trend is slowly reversing itself as more old players return and some newer players are drawn in by the good news, rather than constant bad, that is beginning to trickle out. Guilds are a good thing in this game as well since allies and their resources are always a plus in the cutthroat environment this type of PvP provides.
About character creation: There are so many options for characters, classes, and race in this game that you can spend a good hour or more creating the perfect character. There still needs to be more options for character customization I think starting at physical appearance on down to armor and weapon options and class specific effects whether in combat, or casting abilities, but overall there is far more customization in this game than in most others currently out there.
About housing: Its there and the options are decent. There are lots of areas on the actual map to build player housing and guild halls. the houses range from small huts to huge castle-like structures, and the guildhalls are immense. The housing in this game is by far better than anything ever created. It takes what Ultima Online had, expands on it, and makes it 3D. These structures can be built to mirror the different styles of the continents which are European (Thestra), Asian (Kojani), and African/Middle Eastern (Qualia). You can store items in these houses, decorate them, port to them, and even fight around them if you are on PvP. There are also the boats, also customizable and designed after the continents, that you can sail around the vast world in.
About crafting: You can't talk about housing without mentioning crafting. This game has the most elaborate and interesting crafting system I have seen yet. It begins with harvesting the materials yourself. That might mean cutting down trees, skinning animals you have killed, harvesting stone or gems, reaping grass, etc. After you refine these materials you can take work orders or create what you want through the use of various tables and tools where you mix items in a process to maximize quality etc. There will be complications that arise that require you to react in certain ways and have certain additional materials on hand to deal with them. The trick is you can only have so many things on your table at one time and you can't change these materials once the crafting process is begun. This means that an experienced crafter can predict what he/she may need and ultimately make a higher quality item than is normal. It is not your standard click a button after buying some materials and wait longer, and longer periods to make gear. Needless to say crafters get rich and fast, like in most games, since there items are easily some of the best in the game.
Next is the diplomacy system: It is a card game played against the computer basically and the cards are collectable and tradeable if you don't equip them yourself. Diplomacy will first and foremost give you an alternative thing to do in the game. Secondly it will yield lots and lots of money over time. Thirdly, it will generate city wide buffs to increase everything from crafting attributes, to adventuring ones like hitpoints etc. And finally, it is used to help in the creation of castle like guild halls etc. There are lots of nice rewards from this system such as NPC mercenaries, mages, and merchants that you can summon to serve you at will for a period of time. There are shapeshifting items that drop as well, special diplomatic armor pieces you can create from rewards you receive, and lately even talk about special diplomatic housing. There is also the benefit of excellent lore to read here if you love stories, legends, plots, and intrigue. The system is currently being examined to give it more purpose in the overall world such as possible PvE encounters being advanced or made easier when a high level diplomat is present to do his or her thing; they have already done this with certain high level raid content. There are more ideas being thrown around for diplomacy as well and the talk is good. This is the only game that has ever tried and implemented something like this and I consider it one of their strongpoints.
About content: Currently there is a lot to do at the max level, but there needs to be more and the devs know it. I must point out that compared to the release the amount of quests and active areas to do things in has dramatically increased with each continent offering different quests lines, different themes of loot and armor/weapon drops, and of course different types of monsters to fight. That said high level players still claim to run out of things to do at this point. Very soon they will release what they are calling raid content in the Ancient Port Warehouse. (**This has already been released since this review was posted**) This area is intended for high level players in large groups in a PvE environment. There are still areas where the types of mobs feel a bit monotonous or where there is not anything to do at all. However, you will sometimes see things that are obviously meant to be something but that havn't been fully implemented yet. It is at times like these that you realize the game still isn't fully finished according to what the devs had planned, but it does not feel like a beta version anymore either.
There are flying mounts in the game (although not personal ones yet)(**Permanent personal flying mounts have been announced for the next major game update since this review was posted.**) and abilities like levitate that allow you to climb mountains and soar very high above the world while still seeing it in great detail below you. It takes what people hoped to see in Dark and Light and actually makes it work in this arena and again is an amazing testament to the beautiful world these guys have created.
Character graphics, armor, etc are also still lacking a bit imo. The characters themselves are nice looking and can be customized quite a bit although they need to put in more options eventually. It is the armor and weaponry that is kind of boring in my estimation. What's there doesn't look bad, but it is not flashy enough and there is not enough variety. Furthermore you cannot dye armor at this point, at least as far as I can tell, so your character won't always look as unique as you may desire. They have also not implemented helm art into the game yet, why I do not know, but it is on the list for future development. The only head covering you can get is through a cloak and that looks odd to say the least. All in all what they have is nice enough, but it needs more work. That said I remember how games like DAoC were when they released and they were awful for different armor and weapon options along with facial and body customization. They came out of it later on though and with each expansion they added more flash and flair. I expect the same thing to happen here.
As for population, the PvE servers are doing quite well and the PvP server isn't too far behind them although it is much lower in population. That again is because PvP is not what this game was created for though I think.
So to sum this up. If you want a huge, incredibly scenic world to explore with tons of options for class, race, character etc and liked the Everquest 1 ideas then head over to this game. If you like PvP come to the PvP server. At the very least this game is a great tide-me-over until other titles are released if you are bored senseless like I was. But be aware you may find you like this game more than you expected and those titles will fall on the backburner! Enjoy and I hope these opinions help in your decisions for this game....more info
Vanguard - very fun game! I have played numerous online games over the years. This is one of the better ones! It is actually a 3-in-1 game. You have Diplomacy, Crafting and Adventuring options. You can max out your levels in all of them (it doesn't divide up your experience between the 3) or you can concentrate on just one or two. You can have a level 10 Adventurer, a level 2 Diplomacy, and a level 6 Crafter all in the same character!
There are also numerous character choices to start with along with different races and special abilities. The character building allows almost limitless facial types/expressions.
I personally think this could be a WOW killer except for a couple of lag and stability issues. Hopefully, the developers are working on these problems as I write!
The community is wonderfully helpful and there is a special area for 1st thru 10th level beginners. It is called the Isle of Dawn and for those who complete the end there are some special items that will come in extremely helpful for the main game. Overall a very enjoyable game and one I can see myself playing over and over again. If you haven't tried it, you should download the trial and see for yourself....more info
Probably the worst MMO in existence. I know, the title sounds pretty extreme, but I do not want to leave any doubts about this 'game'. I'll be short with my points as there are too many problems to go in to depth.
The game renderer is severely buggy. Animation stops, characters disappear, surfaces flash and disappear. Sound stops and pops, keyboard input is lost for seconds at a time. No driver updates on my system changed this (it's a quad xeon with a 512mb video card and 4GB of ram, very fast and up-to-date). I get about 7-15 frames per second.
The design of the maps appears to be very amateur and are quite ugly. Most objects have one dull repeating texture. The shapes of most objects are really unrealistic and aesthetically repulsive. Either no artists were involved in its creation, or there is something very wrong with the game engine that hinders them. I refuse to believe there are artists that bad.
Character animation is really poor, as if the developer had no interest in animation better than say, a 3D title from 1990. the player is animated in slow motion, I assume to slow down the pace beyond glacial.
Combat is a mindless button mashing and timing exercise much like EQ and its copy WOW, but even less fun to watch. The timing is roughly three times slower than WOW and EQ. It can take three or four minutes to fight one lower level monster, and more than ten for higher monster. It's incredibly boring. To the point where I lose interest and would ignore screen if my character was not in danger of dying at all times. There is no choice in fighting monsters, anything two levels higher can flatten you in two hits, they chase you to the end of the earth, and run faster than you.
Almost no one is playing. Literally. I saw three people after six hours of play, And two of the the three there were very rude fan-boys. None wanted to play in a group. there are no populated outposts, just camp after camp of non-player characters giving lame quests. All the broadcast channels for player chat are off, there is no way to find other non-local players to ask for advice or help.
Monsters or opponents are spread out evenly so you sit there and pull one. Then fight it, then another, fight it... ad infinitum. Until you can walk to wherever. All monsters re-spawn in a matter of seconds so the monster you just killed will pop up right behind you while you fight the next, and attack you. In many cases they re-spawn immediately after dying. This game manages to faithfully preserve one of the lamest conventions of MMOs.
Out of the thirty or so quests I did, all but a few were 'kill seven bears', and 'kill seven wolves. How do the quests change later? 'Kill twelve bears', and 'kill twelve wolves', a few seemed different, but essentially were deliveries or bosses. There is nothing of interest in the world but assigned quests.
The classes are just rehashes of every other MMO that came before. All of the skills I encountered were mundane. Click a button and you hit for 16 more damage. Click another and it's 12 more damage, etc.
There are about seven monster models (as far as I went) with just a name change to designate what they are. A grey wolf, kit, wolf pup, and whatever else, are all just a chalky white dog model with different text floating above them.
The day is seventy two minutes I believe, so it's constantly flipping from day to night as if the planet is suffering from some neurosis. This happens so fast yet there are no shadows so it just seems like the lights are going out. Daylight is really dim looking on top of it all. Of course the player moves as if it's a seventy two hour day.
This game has constant lag, while the other online games I play do not. Lag is also devastating. You don't go slower or have a minor hiccup, you just suddenly have different health, are somewhere else, are dead. etc.
The world is big and open, and pretty much empty and featureless. Combine the barren world with the horrid art, and visually It's like playing a non-cartoon themes version of WOW, with even less noticable scenery. The monotony is broken up by rocks though. Giant rocks all with identical surfaces that are shaped unlike any real rocks.
Character creation seems to be little more than a feature to put on the box. It's useless as the characters all look the same (very ugly). The armors and clothing in the game stick through each-other and as stated above, appear to be designed and created by an an amateur.
It takes up to five minutes to log in, because the launch utility checks all your files every time. Once that happens the game sits there with a drawing of who knows what (it's not related to the game) until it loads.
Death penalty is harsh for two reason. You will die a lot due to the draconian control over your choices as a player (you can not fight outside your level because it's designed to make the smartest and stupidest player completely equal, yet random high level monsters are tossed in lower areas). You will die when encountering bugged monsters that suddenly can no longer be hit or lose health, but they still can kill you. On top of it all it costs more to repair your items than you will ever make. Also you have to run back to continue your quest, and all the monsters will be alive again.
They charge money for it. It would be inaccurate to describe this game as not quite finished. It's not really anything but the most rudimentary and broken beginnings of a poor game, yet they are actually telling people it's done and accepting money. Maybe it can't be called fraud as a legal charge, but it's certainly misrepresentation.
So to be blunt. It's bad. Before this game I didn't think I could reccomend a game a sbad as World of Warcraft over anything, but WOW is better than this game. In fact I don't think any MMO I have played before even comes close to being this bad....more info
Better than most that I have played or reviewed Ok - so I have only played 3 other MMOs - Lineage II for 2 years, Archlord for 4 months, and WoW for about 30 minutes. I have looked at other MMOs in stores, and read the reviews, but I have only purchased and played the ones mentioned.
I have just finished reading all 66 reviews currently posted. For those of you who purchased VG before or just after its release and did not like it, I suggest that you go back and give it another try. Many of the issues have been resolved.
There are now so many quests that your quest log book can not hold them all. Yes, there are only a few for the beginning areas - but there are tons of beginning areas. If you do not like the quests in your area - go to another one.
However, that is not typically necessary - as the beginning quests provide enough experience to get to higher levels and more quests.
Which brings us to what is often referred to as the "GRIND". Killing mobs over and over and over and over again to get to the next level. It is my understanding that all MMOs require experience to get to the next level and this is typically done by killing monsters. Now, I came from Lineage II where the grind is truly horrible. You kill mobs all day long and only gain a small percentage of your level.
VG is not like that at all. Yes, there is a grind, but in addition to the actual quests, there are also missives in the small towns and outposts which offer excellent experience when you consider the time it takes to complete them. And, as an added bonus, you can turn in 10 of these missives for the chance at a decent reward. As an exmample of the experience for these missives, my level 30 warrior was able to earn 40% of the experience needed for his next level in about 90 mins. This would be unheard of in Lineage II.
Death penalty? Of course there should be a death penalty. If you are stupid enough to put yourself in a situation where you will die - you deserve a penalty. I have died several times and do not consider the penalty particularly harsh. You lose some experience. Other MMOs - like Lineage II - you drop equipment - which anyone can pick up and keep. Never mind that said equipment took weeks or months to earn - unless you buy $$ from gold sellers.
Which brings me to the other part that previous reviews have missed. The economy of VG. While VG does have its gold sellers, they are not as prevelant as they are in WoW and Lineage II. Lineage II in particular was overrun with bots and sellers.
In VG, it is simply not necessary to spend real money to buy fake money to get the items you need. If you truely need a particular item, you always have the option of starting an alt (alternative character) and leveling his crafting ability to make the item you need. Or making it yourself. My warrior is also an armorsmith and can make his own armor. If he needs something other than armor, he can trade items he makes for items he needs.
Many people complained about the lag, things disappearing, and no one to group with.
As far as I can tell, these have all been addressed. Things no longer disappear (That was annoying) I play on the Hillsbury server, and there are always people willing to group up. I have never had a problem find a group when I needed one. The lag is non-existent for me - barring the times I move to a new "chunk" (region)
Overall, I have found VG to be an exceptional game which does indeed address many of the problems other games have. For those of you who gave up - give it another shot. For those of you who are considering it - I beleive it to be a good buy....more info
Fun but time consuming First off I'd like to say that Vanguard is a fantastic game. Easily the best MMORPG out there to date. Huge world, no zoning, amazing graphics, interesting combat system.
Its biggest drawback comes from the rediculously high system requirements. I'd suggest having a X1950+ to play this game as well as 2 gigs of ram.
Other drawbacks are fixable in time; crashes to desktop, in game bugs, gold sellers..etc...more info
So close...yet so far. Still a lot of promise. I got into this game during beta, I've been playing it since launch. I watched Sigil fall apart and SOE jump in. The game development is handled so poorly it's getting ridiculous.
Set yourself free is the slogan, the image is an adventurer soaring high in the sky wherever he wants to go. Not gonna happen for you in game. STILL, you can only fly on rentals for a couple minutes. They don't even work very well either, they will poof and cause you to fall to your death. Pretty annoying when you PAY for it, then have to run back and buy another one. Don't forget that you need to go find your corpse where it dropped you. Perhaps some day they can fix this and add in the quest for flying mounts. They already finished the quests on their end, but they haven't been added yet.
Guild halls were just barely added, but they require more work than anyone imagined. That's fine though, I appreciate the hard core side of it. WoW is pathetic, any step away from WoW is good. The problem is the over camped quest items you need that nobody can get without spawn camping on the hour. Not only do you have all the guilds from 4 different servers trying to get them (they had to have a server merge because the population is dying), you have the jerks camping them to sell them. It's not hardcore, it's lame. They admit this and are gonna fix it...it's fixed on their end. They've said it's been fixed on their end for a month now yet we still don;t have it live yet. See a trend?
They promised so many things and they couldn't deliver at launch. That was fine with me, you create a beast of a game you deserve a little slack and extra time in my book. Sigil tried to push updates in quickly and just broke the game further, now SOE takes forever to do ANYTHING. I'm still paying for this game because I enjoy my guild mates, but I don't know how much longer I can allow the poor development to drag it's feet and charge me money. I understand the mess they had to clean up and how much time is needed, but it's getting to be too much effort for the reward.
The 3 spheres don't work very well with each other. Adventuring and Crafting have the relationship you'd expect, but Diplomacy has been downright pointless since launch. They decided to make diplomacy finally worth it by making the guild hall construction require top tier diplomats. That just created a rush of mad grinders and players botting their way up. They are supposed to be needed in raiding whenever they actually add that. The diplo and craft grinds can really split up a guild if you are not careful.
This game still has a lot of promise and could be something some day but they need to start getting things done quicker. They are losing their fanbase the longer they take to get this to what it should have been at release. This game will eventually need PVP introduced to PVE servers, they talked about putting PVP on PVE servers but it's never happened thanks to the PVP being terrible on the PVP servers and everything else being a cluster-fudge.
I am very down on this game right now, but it has it's redeeming qualities still. It has unique classes and plenty of customization for now, most of my guild mates play their characters uniquely. I have had more fun with my Disciple than I have ever had playing another class in any other mmo. There are less complex classes like Sorcerer, but Rogues and Disciples are by far my favorite because of their complexity.
Plenty of quests, this game has a lot to do at most levels. I have seen official reviews bashing some of the quests because they were poorly written, but those have been re-worked. There was a lot of typos in the beginning. I have always enjoyed the quests, they even have some adult humor in the game that is not so obvious as other games. This game has a lack of lore behind it, but it has amazing lore buried down in the much ignored diplomacy quests. I thought the Kurashasa (cat race) initial diplomacy quests were great and as I traveled they still kept my interest.
They didn't want portals in this game, but they were forced to add them because of how buggy the game was. The boats would drop players in the water and the game would crash, they could not leave it like that with how large the world is. The game doesn't crash anymore, the boats don't drop you anymore, but the portals have stayed. They caved. That bothered me, but I can get over it. There is still plenty of hard core left in this game.
Crafting is respectable, it is very deep like SWG had. It is perhaps the longest grind in the game. It's complexity is GREAT! The rare items you need for great crafted items are GREAT! However, the way you level is by doing work orders for NPCs. Boooooooooooooooring. They needed to mix it up here, it's insane doing the amount of work orders needed. I know, I did them for 50 levels. They have introduced rest xp and lowered the xp curve so it's much easier now. I don't know exactly how it is now because they did this after I got to the top tier, but guildies have said it's better now.
Plenty of positives and negatives with this game, sadly the positives are overshadowed by things like no flying mounts, no helmets, no tails on animal races, no raiding, no decent pvp etc. The good news is that they have done a lot with the performance issues this game has had.
The community is better than WoW and EQ2, reminds me of the old SWG crowd. Sadly the majority is busy complaining, but when they are playing the game and focused they are great people.
I can't really recommend this game right now, but I hope you do come check it out. I don't see any other decent mmorpgs coming out. Most everything these days are WoW clones. This game was built with the right idea, huge world with tons of customization. Details, depth, freedom. SOE has been slow, but they have tried to stick with that original plan. I have hope still....more info
I'm glad I bought it here for less than half the retail price! Because it is definitely not worth full price. I'd been wanting to try this game for a while, hearing about being able to ride dragons and things and control the flying parts of the game sounded cool. It was fun for a while, after I spent two days going back and forth with tech support trying to figure out why it did not work. After their ideas bore no fruit, I decided to take matters into my own hands and looked at the INI file. It was as simple as changing the default resolution from 1280x1024 to 1024x768, my monitor is the only part of my computer that has remained the same for the last 12 years and does not support higher settings. From there it was just a matter of making a character and starting the game. It was fun for a while, I played it for two days before I ran into some major problems. One more day than I played WOW before I gave up on it, but that was only a demo and cost me nothing. Anyway, the first problem was that there are nasty things too close to the newbie area. I saw the only hostile creature in the area two seconds before it saw me, and since it was 4 levels higher it made short work of me. The second problem is a lack of exact location determination, your waypoint is marked on your compass and on your map but only a general idea of where that person or place is will be shown. The mini map does not zoom in enough to detail where it is, and I gave up on the game all together when I was told my trainer was in a temple that I spent 20 minutes circling the solid rocks that the map and compass said contained him. A simple trail like the EQ games have would have made this situation not become so frustrating. I'll keep an eye on VGPlayers for updates, but my last 25 days on the free 30 are going to be unused and I'm going to be sure to cancel the subscription until I see an update that fixes these problems. I was not looking forward to the bad parts of other MMORPGS (which were patched to remove them) like corpse retrieval and harvesting to make little pieces to be combined later, but now I don't have to worry about that....more info
Not perfect, but a solid, fun game MMORPGs (massively multilayer online role-playing games) are now numerous, with World of Warcraft boasting millions of players and other games like City of Heroes catering to a specific niche of dedicated gamers. Vanguard is a rather new game with many familiar aspects that experienced MMORPG gamers will quickly recognize.
First, the game's graphics are stunning. Yes, you will likely need to disable some features in order for the game to run smoothly. I run a rather modest system that is several years old, but even after some graphical features have been turned off, the game is truly stunning. This translates into a solid immersion factor that lends well to the MMORPG's epic feel. Often times, it is enough to simply admire the world. The graphics may not be perfect, but they offer enough visual gratification to stun most people.
But the game's mechanics are the most important thing, especially if you plan to invest large amounts of time leveling your character. Character creation gives players the almost overwhelming choice between 19 races and 15 classes. Further, the look of your avatar is very customizable, though more face and hair options would be a good addition, you still feel that you have a large degree of control over how your character looks, especially considering the number of races.
It should be noted that each class plays very differently. And there are some very cool abilities that are worth looking at. Vanguard doesn't break the mold entirely with its array of professions, but it creates classes that are flexible and dynamic. For example, the blood mage is technically a healer class, but drains the life of his or her foes to heal, making the class viable in solo or offensive play.
It should be noted that leveling up is not quick. Players used to WoW's (sometimes too) quick leveling up process may be disappointed. Starting areas do offer enough quests to keep you from randomly killing monsters (contrary to what another poster said, perhaps this was addressed in an update). However, quests are not always that interesting. Some players may appreciate the longer leveling up process (perhaps it is more bang for your buck?) but it may turn away more casual gamers.
Navigation is one of my biggest annoyances in Vanguard. Sometimes quest-givers are too vague in their location descriptions, and because the world is so large this can be frustrating. Some building interiors are truly maze-like, so even when you do get a (very handy) map-marker denoting the area of your target, it may take you some time to find your way to your destination. Still, navigation is part of the fun as well, as exploring the world is rewarding and fun.
Death is sometimes annoying. When you die, you loose a certain amount of experience and you loose many of your items. You can recover your items from your spawn point, but to regain some of your lost experience you must find and loot your tombstone (which is invariably next to the things that killed you to begin with). And that walk can sometimes be rather long considering the huge size of the world. Luckily, you can buy your first mount at level 10 (for an affordable price).
Crafting, another element important in many MMORPGs, is more complex in Vanguard than in many others. The ability to take "Work orders" which provide materials and offer money and item rewards is a nice addition to the game because it enables players to level up their crafting without having to buy or harvest immense amounts of resources. Each crafted item has numerous steps, and you must choose from a collection of actions at each step (sometimes expending cheap items like 'solvent' in the process) to complete the item. Choosing harder actions (like "etch detailed designs") results in a higher quality item. Crafting is more than just selecting the item to make and watching a progress bar...but not everyone will enjoy the complexities of Vanguard's system. Harvesting is nothing special, you simply find the materials in the world and try to extract them. But again, the ability to take "Work Orders" to build your skill means you won't have to endure hours of harvesting to raise your crafting skills.
Another strange factor about Vanguard is the fact that it seems to be more "empty" than many other MMORPGs. You will run across plenty of players, especially as you move out of the new player zone, but in many areas you'll find yourself relatively alone. However, this means competition for mobs (at least when you are solo) is pretty much none non-existent. It may also make the game feel like there aren't a lot of people playing, but that is just because the world is so large.
Vanguard has become a solid contender in the world of MMORPGs, but it is not for the casual gamer. Player's used to the relative ease of games like World of Warcraft (Which nearly all MMOs are being compared to nowadays) may find the game too slow and difficult. But it is not, to be honest, that slow, and the mechanics are pretty straightforward. If you already are enjoying a MMORPG, then I wouldn't recommend switching, but if you are looking for a new game and have plenty of free time, Vanguard is a great pick. Just be ready to work hard for your progress, because it isn't always easy. This may not be a great choice if this is your first MMORPG, but overall it is a pretty good title that is worth checking out. ...more info
Vanguards review from a regular with MMORPG's As someone who's played several MMORPG's (EQ2, SWG(from release until the CU) GW, DDO,FFO, DAOC)- Vanguard seemed extremely suited for someone whos missing the content from EQ1. This comes directly from the people I play with on a regualar basis. I didnt personally play EQ1 but from the people who did - they love Vanguard. The crafting system is interesting since you can gain xp without having actual resources in your inventory. You will need an extremely good comp to effectively to run Vanguard. I personally played it for 1 week and then went back to Guild Wars and EQ2. But the game was overall decent....more info
Great game Vanguard is a great game. Yes, there are some bugs as it is relatively new. Yes, the population isn't what it will be and at times finding groups can be difficult. But I have noticed a steady increase in population and I am finding it now less difficult to group. Sony keeps releasing updates on a regular basis which is resolving bug issues. Aside from these 2 negatives, the positives in the game far outweigh them. Being able to build housing, level in crafting or diplomacy outside of the sphere of adventuring adds dimensions to the gameplay unseen elsewhere. The graphics are awesome! You will need a decent vid card and some system ram (I currently have 2GB) but these are trivial upgrades (which will enable you to play other great games in the process). Fun, this game is. It isn't for the impatient or those that want to play a game like WoW. It is a true MMORPG - don't forget the RPG part. It's not a cartoon nor does it try to be cheeky. If you want more of a challenge and want to immerse yourself in a fantasy world, Vanguard will take you there....more info
For Lineage Withdrawl I've been playing Lineage2 for 3 years, as Malorie on Gustin. Then, all NCSoft games went Vista non-compatable. I'm happy to say that Vanguard is Vista compatable, although the game guide is ancient, 3 months after the launch. So far, some of the character actions are a little slow for my taste, but at least it works!! Mal lives!!...more info
Addicted to Vanguard This game has come a long ways since it's inception almost a year ago. Since Sony acquired it, game performance has improved tremendously. It is possible to solo to 50 (although dropped gear and group questing rewards are much better than the soloable gear, as it should be!). Crafting is just difficult enough to feel quite accomplished once you've mastered it. Diplomacy is unique to Vanguard, and offers a sphere of its own that doesn't require crafting or adventuring to enjoy. If you've enjoyed Asheron's Call or Everquest, give Vanguard a shot - it is a lot more polished now.
If you choose to try Vanguard, type /join craft and /join dip while ingame to gain access to the friendliest community I've seen in an MMO. There is no fear of asking questions in this game....more info
Vanguard Saga of Heroes This game has come a long way since it's rocky start! Definately worth a second look as most of what was complained about is now fixed! I'm so glad I gave it a second try!...more info
Character counts for a lot Having recently joined the game from LOTR online I find the vanguard concept to be both refreshing visually and rewarding in play style . The game is quest based and aims to develop your character slowly into the Lore and landscape of the world. Hence if you are a power leveler or gear display junkie you will be disappointed aka recent reviews. Yes it has bugs, yes it has death penalties and a lot of its theory has yet to be implemented, but they are trying to develop a unique type of game play i.e diplomacy as a non-violent means of advancement )alternatives to the boring grind and farming rut most other MORPG's have. You don't have to be level 60 or a raid queen to get horses or entry to special dungeons and zones. Vanguard has worked hard at the atmosphere of the game and has for example excellent music and interesting unique cites to explore.
The individual abilities and skills are fun and special, for example cloud walking, where you can wander/fly around the lands in a hover mode. The economy also is balanced and seems to be working well i.e. unlike other games where being gold greedy gets you nice gear.
Vanguard is trying to offer a unique alternative gaming experience , it doesn't want to be a WOW type. It wants develop a immersing atmospheric world, beyond the typical linear hack and slash, wheres my xp, type game. It should get praise for wanting to strike a real balance between experience and advancement. It has faults but faced with the alternative grind factories, I'd prefer to struggle through this gem in the making.
Junk Graphics are so over-done that you wind up making the game look worse than EQ1 to get a solid 50+ FPS, which ends up dropping to 10 FPS when you run near a group of players.
Combat is boring, repetitive, uninspiring, etc. Crafting is 10x's worse.
Anyone who enjoys the game hasn't gotten much past 30 or has their own regular group to play with.
If you buy this game, you'll spend hours looking for certain classes of a certain level who are willing to do a certain portion of a certain quest line. Good luck with that....more info
Wasted Potential What could have been a good game is ruined by laggy play and the inclusion of all the worst "time wasting" parts of RPGs... interminable travel times, body recoveries and endless "Kill X number of X beast and report to me" quests. Everything just moves sooo slowly......more info
the real Vanguard Returning player from launch. I was one of the many disappointed by Vanguard. I wanted to fall in love with it, but I couldn't. I always checked up to see how it was improving. Then I read impressions of the current state, so I had to check it out for myself. WOW!!! Vanguard is now truly an epic game. Flying mounts are in, ships are in, basically everything promised at release is now in game and then some. The team currently helping VG chug along has done a tremendous job. VG wil never see subscription numbers in the millions, but it will have a very tight knit community that love our game. I can finally call Telon my home for good....more info
Excellent MMORPG Launch This game is pretty amazing. It has had no server side lag issues since launch which is simply amazing given that most games of it's genre are simply unplayable for their first few months.
The graphics are amazing, it's the best looking virtual world you'll find. No cartoon like graphics here. The game is deep with tons of stuff to do, crafting is very deep and intricate, diplomacy is a fun alternative to adventuring and crafting.
The only con is the player base is still underdeveloped so it can be hard to find a group if your not playing with friends. This should change with time. ...more info
Good game I guess, but takes some work. This game has a ton going for it - but at the same time it has just as much against it in what seem to be needless places.
The game design itself is great - races, classes, abilities, crafting, pace (for the most part) are all great a thought out. And honestly, that's what is important. You should at least try it. But it's the little things, My God, the little things that almost make every time my last time.
- the level of graphics (which is one of the most discussed aspects of this game online) isn't where it needs to be. A lot of people say the game looks amazing, even at low-moderate settings. A friend of mine even says that when we're both looking at the same screen in my office. I just don't quite get it. Yes, several aspects of the game look really pretty, but not all of it does, and it really lacks any artistic style. The trees swaying in the wind in the distance looks great - but the merchant tent 10ft in front of me looks like it was carved out of a block of wood and dropped onto a flat piece of green ground. And that kind of contrast just makes the graphics sort of "not look right" to me. And if you need a high end PC to run a game that looks "not quite right" - then it's wrong.
- a small thing here, but a good example: when you go up stairs your screen jumps like you're having a seizure (apparently it is literally taking you up and in on each step) - come on! None of he devs walked up the stairs during testing and realized this was ridiculous??!
- there is a glitch or bug everywhere you turn, on almost a regular basis while questing. An item doesn't drop, a scripted event doesn't happen, interacting takes 3 clicks instead of 1 on a particular step of a quest, or the game just decides to tell you you can't see your enemy even though you now that's not right. Just when everything is going fine, you are reminded that the game was released before it was really finished.
- character model customization allows you to change several things, probably around 60 - 70 sliders. However, only 5 or 6 of them really matter at all. You will spend 45mins playing around with your model - then enter the game and look like everyone else except for 1. Hair style, 2. Hair color, 3. facial hair, 4. facial markings, 5. skin color, and maybe 6. Height and weight if you go extreme. Why they bother letting you tweak the other 50-60 things, rather than giving you at least 15-20 options for those just listed (normally only 4 for the hair things), is beyond me. My point is: if they're going to allow several combinations of character model options, they should be combinations that show up.
But, if that doesn't turn you off - then try it out, because even with all that I keep playing, so something must be right.
Also - when comparing to other MMOs, I would say it's actually up there on the list, despite my complaint-puking I did above.
Vanguard Saga of Heroes vanguard saga of heroes is a good game want's you get passed the begining
lovels. there are some diplomatict quest's if you like that sort of thing
the realausem of cuting down trees his great the overall game is good
but the only draw back is that it is done by SOE.
Constantly improving Vanguard had a shaky start for sure, but since the launch almost two years ago it has improved constantly. The game is still not perfect, but the playerbase seems to be growing, and I have a blast every time I log in!...more info
Awful, awful game Besides having a decent graphically enhanced environment (which by the way completely hogs all of your systems memory, leaving your gameplay experience more or less laggy at times) this game disappointed me on many levels.
-Classes no more "advanced" than any other MMORPG. I was told this was a "second generation" of MMO, and that combat would be far more difficult to master. It was the same set-up as every other MMO I've played.
-Horribly buggy, holes in zone floors that make you stuck (which there is a /stuck command, which sends you to a set point, BUT)
-Terrible in-game support: My friend was banned for using the /stuck command to get out of a buggy zone spot. GM claimed he was "manipulating the game" and creating an unfair advantage for using it. A LIFETIME ban. For a command the game creators created. Tried to appeal, with no such luck. Customer support and game masters complete idiots.
Honestly, if you are looking for something that is unlike the norm, I'm still yet to find it. All I know is that this game is pitiful, and I would gladly play something "first generation" like World of Warcraft before considering re-activating my account- ever....more info
More players wanted. Reading the reviews for this game it is remarkable how polarized they are. Most either totally love or abhor the game. I would argue that a ranking somewhere in between is more appropriate.
I have been playing Vanguard for about 3 months since launch and have reached mid level, playing about 3 evenings a week. This shows that a significant commitment in time is required to make progress, more serious than some are willing to make. This is intended and in general not unusual for this kind of game. The game content and especially groups and raids, becomes more interesting as higher levels are reached, to some degree explaining the low grades by those who probably did not stick with the game long.
This game is meant to be played in groups. When playing in a good group, progress at a rate of a level every 1-2 days is normal. While soloing is possible, as I have done the majority of the time, it requires patience since group quests are nearly impossible to play solo at the experience level that they were intended to be played at in groups. While lower level quests can be done solo, the reward in experience is rather small at that point.
Group fighting is challenging and never a simple click a button and wait affair. As a tank keeping your group alive requires full attention using rescues, special attacks, besides simple hitting/taunting. Over all this is the strongest side of the game.
The graphics are in general good, the textures are more realistic than those of other games, attempting to better immerse a player into the game. Lag is present on even high-end systems mostly due to disk access between chunks, the equivalent of zones in other games, although the boundaries are invisible to the player. Vanguard does not have load screens. While lag is annoying it is usually of little consequence. A system well at or exceeding the recommended specs is needed to get decent frame rates at medium image settings in heavily populated areas. Most gamers will have systems that should get decent frame rates.
Long travel times have been mentioned as minus. While they exist they allow you to have a snack, watching the landscape fly by. Horses are obtainable already at level 10. Bugs do exist. Some of them have been fixed, many of them still exist, and while they are annoying they are not unusual in any new program/game of this complexity. Overall, they do not significantly take the fun away to my opinion.
The biggest problem at the moment is not so much a problem of the game engine or game content but the lack of people/players. While grouping is encouraged, the usually rather small server population and the sheer magnitude of the enormous continents makes it difficult to find good groups regularly. This may become a game breaker if it doesn't improve.
In general, a good game with great potential if more should be willing to play it....more info
The next incarnation of Everquest First things off, they put this game out too early. SOE was going to delay the release of this game another 3-6 months....and they should have. Right now the game looks good, runs well (for most people), and truly is a fun experience. However, there are still alot of bugs being worked out along with things that have yet to be implimented in game (such as boat transports.) SOE has compensated for some of these things, but it's going to be a few months before Vanguard gets that good layer of polish on it.
I've played Everquest, Shadowbane, Saga of Rysom, Dark Age of Camelot, World of Warcraft, Dark and Light, Eve Online, Ultima, ...yeah, alot of games. The only thing that Vanguard is missing is the RvR experience that DAoC provided. other than that, it's the best game going right now....more info
Why so much hostility? Having read most of the 75 posted reviews to date, it is very clear this is a "Love It or Hate It" game and there's no in-between. But there's not been anything significant posted in several weeks, so I felt a need to update anyone considering this MMO. Most of these posts (sadly) do not do this outstanding game justice.
First of all, I played EQ1 since Kunark and have been searching for something to fill that addiction ever since. I've tried DAOC, EQ2, AC2, Guild Wars, WoW, SWG, and several others, but nothing (and I mean nothing) has been able to fill that EQ1 void like this does. I have an extensive MMO background to base my opinion upon.
Now, obviously, there are huge similarities between this and EQ1, being developed by the same minds. However, there are so many improvements, drawing from all of the above mentioned MMO's that it leaves one to wonder how can there be so much hostility towards this game??
I will be the first to admit that this is not a 3rd generation MMO. I don't believe such a thing exists yet. This does however (given the chance) draw the gamer into its environment and provide an immersive, fun gaming experience whether for hours on end, or just a short period.
Being a "mature" gamer (35+), I for one despise the WoW-kiddie environments and all the BS smacktalking and region spam that goes on in most MMO's. I think that in general VG provides a more mature community, and from what I have encountered over the last 8 months of playing VG, most of the people you ask questions of are more than willing to help you get the answer or explain why something is the way it is. Most of the hostile reviews that I have read are transparent enough to know that either they didn't give the game enough of a chance, or couldn't get the desired group within the first 5 minutes, so quit the game altogether. WTH? Give it a chance people.
My "main" currently is a level 38 Disciple. This class is a combination of a cleric & a monk, and can solo extremely well (as well as very desireable in a group). I can solo mobs up to 2-3 levels above me depending on the number of "dots". Anyone who says they can't beat same level mobs solo, doesn't know how to play their class. I've tried them all and all classes are self-sufficient, just in different ways.
This is not a game that you are going to "conquer" within the first 90 days. Nor is it meant to be. Buy this game only if you are looking for an open ended, fun, relationship-building experience that is going to last you several years. I read several times on these posts phrases like "waste of money" and "not worth the monthly fee". How much do you spend at the movies for a 2 hour joyride? I consider VG extremely cheap entertainment.
Here are the GOOD vs. the BAD in Vanguard:
- laggy at times (now made worse by the server merges)
- incessant gold-seller spamming (granted most to all MMO's have this)
- occasional crash-to-desktop issues
- some minor bugs still exist in quests
- lack of "raid" content (for now)
- outstanding graphics (at any setting)
- challenging and fun quests/missives that reward experience accordingly
- a complex faction system requiring you to have to earn your player renown and status
- a HUGE (at least 10 times larger than WoW) expansive world to explore with multiple continents that have a distinctly different feel to each
- a new Diplomacy sphere which is fun and immersive
- excellent player crafted items making crafting a worthwhile endeavor
- a mature player base (for the most part)
- huge replayability factor, making alt characters almost a necessity in order to learn all the aspects of the various starting areas
- multiple mount options starting at level 10, several of which require very involved quests
Now I do have certain minor beefs with some of the recent changes to the game (such as making all gear "bind on equip"), but these pale in comparison to the overall abuse this game is taking from what seems like 70% of the reviews.
As you can see, the GOOD outweighs the BAD in Vanguard. Hopefully, this info will aid those with an open mind to give this worthy game a chance.
Vanguard MMORPG The game aas a whole was okay. However there were many aspects of the game that just drove me crazy. Like how hard it is to target a mob. Little things like that that I know can be done better, since I have played MMORPG's for 10 years now. The thing that aggravated me the most was that about level 8 you are forced into playing with others. If you keep an odd schedule or are simply the kind that likes to grind out levels on your own then this is not the game for you....more info
Worth checking out Ive played Vanguard since day 1 and enjoyed it from the beginning.
It had a rough start and lost many customers, but it has come a long way and is currently experiencing a resurgence of players. Performance is literally 100%-300% better for most players, with thousands of bugs squashed and quite a bit of new content.
Its about the only major MMO on the market now that can be considered a bit more 'old school'. If you enjoyed Everquest, this is about the only game out there that has the potential to make give you back a bit of that feeling. The huge open world is a big plus, and there is so much content that you have to play through multiple characters to ever see it all.
Its absolutely worth trying out now that it is ship shape, and there is going to be a free downloadable trial coming out in about 2-3 weeks from this date (august 10, 2008). Check it out!
Its like someone peed in your favorite icecream The title basically sums up everything this game is. Yea yea, it was released early.... It has bugs... Ok we all know this. PLAY AT YOUR OWN RISK. The game has potential. HAS potential. Right now, it's a frustrating pathetic excuse for a game, not worth paying a monthly charge for. It should be free until all the bugs and kinks are worked out. The leg is terrible. Why is the lag terrible? I don't know - WoW works absolutely fine. Furthermore - Unless you're a sadomasochist, the community on the PVP servers is filled with extremely immature people who will kill you as soon as they see you, and continue you killing you until you log off. On the flip side - You can go on a PVE server, walk around for hours, without seeing someone, find quests that require groups to complete, and not be able to progress. Ontop of all this, dying in the game = very unforgiveable. You lose exp, and risk dying multiple times trying to get your tombstone. Add in the pvp aspect of it, and your tombstone = bait for gankers. I really did try to give this game some time to grow on me... The first day I was very close to trying to get a refund. When I found that a refund is absolutely not possible, I tried to enjoy myself. Between server crashes, being killed repeatedly, bugged quests, bugged environments, constantly lag, and a very immature vulgar community of players, I found this game to be beyond playable and urge anyone to STAY CLEAR OF IT. Do yourself a favor - DO NOT BUY THIS GAME. It has been one headache after another, and frankly that is now how something YOU PAY FOR should be. It's too much of a hassle - Maybe there will be fixes several months down the line, as of now, it's terrible and utterly horrible. Play WoW instead - And if you already play WoW, this game will serve as a reminder to how superior WoW is....more info
Doesn't suck balls anymore! It's true, this game was launched far too soon and was a bug riddled mess (blame Sigil for imploding).
That was a long time ago, and the game seriously doesn't suck balls anymore (like it arguably did).
There are still bugs and things that needs fixed, but the game is very playable at this point and on par with other MMORPG's out there right now in that they all have bugs and issues and area always going to need constant updating and fixing, it's the nature of the genre.
The performance is much improved, though still has hitching and lag issues (what game doesn't though). The skeleton dev team remaining have done a wonderful job getting the game playable and adding enough polish and content that it's having a rebirth right now and populations are on the rise. The important thing is that the game is finally very playable.
There are three spheres of advancement, all of which you can gain levels:
The classes are unique and fun, and you'll never get stuck with a class that 'sucks' as all the classes are viable and fairly well balanced (more balancing and revamps coming very soon).
The crafting I'm told is amazing, I don't personally craft much, but I know many people that ONLY craft in the game, it's that good.
Diplomacy needs some work, but is fun. It's a sort of mini card game where you argue/discuss with different npcs to gain buffs, learn a lot of lore. It's not for everyone, but you can get a free horse doing it in the early levels, so it's worth trying ;)
Nobody ever doubted the world is beautiful and amazing. It's non-instanced and doesn't have zones to load into (though there are chucks that can make you hitch a bit crossing). There are actual dungeons, with actual other groups and players fighting things, so the world feels alive even with low populations because everyone isn't couped up in one of a hundred different versions of the same instance.
The best thing is the game is dirt cheap right now, and the first month of play is free if you buy the box. As well, in a month or so a free trial is going to be released. If you go to the official website there are also a lot of people giving away free buddy keys that will let you try the game out too. Basically at this point you can try it for free (or less that 20 bucks easily), so why not give it a shot?
It's still not perfect and has it's issues, but it's finally playable and a lot of fun, and even with a skeleton dev team a lot of new content and fixes are in the works....more info
Refreshing I have played a dozen of MMO beginning with UOL and finishing with Age of Conan that I have just desinstalled fatre it occupied my HD for full whooping 8 days .
In my personnal ranking sofar I had :
EQ N¡ã1 for immersion and the size of the world
LOTRO N¡ã1 for graphics and a consistent story line/quest system
EQ2 N¡ã1 for trade skills
After a friend's suggestion I had installed Vanguard 1 week ago .
Sofar it has been a very rewarding experience .
The overall feeling is clearly EQ like while many additionnal features were added .
The strong points I already noticed :
- a mature player basis . Many quilds require 18+ for membership and the players are accordingly rather helpfull and patient . That makes for a pleasant change after having suffered for 1 + year the WoW masses .
- a very good customer service . Friday evening I have made a /report about a quest that wouldn't update correctly . I expected that I would perhaps get a mail on Monday telling me that they were working on it . Instead after 10 minutes I got a tell from a GM who joined me immediately and solved the problem . He was very friendly and polite what also was a pleasant change after most of other MMOs .
- original and excellent diplomacy system . Especially the newbie diplomacy quests are interesting and make for a good introduction in the game (as a Gnome I have been incorporated in the counterintelligence department and charged with the investigation of strange disappearance of mages and inventors) .
- the trade skills are similar to EQ2 that I rank N¡ã1 so , obviously , I am very satisfied with it
- the world is huge and non instanced what enhances the immersion feeling
- the classes are very complementary and balanced . On top of the classical EQ classes (with enchanters called psionists here) there are blood mages and disciples . Sofar I have tried only 3 (necromancer , bard and psionist) and they get all 3 a very different gaming feel .
- patience is needed and players don't get spoonfed with items , XP and gold by just running around 10 minutes . That has also the merit that it effectively eliminates most kids that want everything at once . The death penalty is a good thing in that respect too .
To the weaker points I'd mention :
- one doesn't see many players . My highest level is 12 and I have met players only in the big cities . Sofar it was easy to solo but I play MMORPGs mostly for the first MM . If I wanted to go solo , I would not buy an OL game . I also noticed that calls for groups were extremely rare and when it happened it was in the 30ies range . I have been told that :
a) the world is so huge that players are all over the place
b) the bad launch of the game has chased most of the players away but the population began to go again up since SOE took over , eliminated most of the bugs and implemented features that were not there at launch
c) a free trial is foreseen in september that would create an influx of new players
Well wait and see . It was precisely the huge player basis that had been an important element of the immersion feeling in EQ .
- the graphics and character customisation . While not bad it could be improved
- too fast day/night change . It is irritating . I'd scale it to something like 3 hours day and 1 hour night .
Definitely the strong and original points of this game largely outweigh the weaker points and there is still potential to improvement by future releases .
I'd even rank it overall a tad above LOTRO that was for me sofar the best "modern" MMORPG .
I recommend it to any mature player and certainly to all those who appreciated EQ .
Great in theory..... I read all of the hype about this game and believed it. The game play is terrible. Characters look terrible. Swimming backwards looks like swimming forward, but in the other direction, and you can't get your head above the water to take a breath, so outside of finding land your dead. Clipping needs ALOT of work, because if your not really close to anything, it just disappears, not fades out, disappears. Yes the game is vast and big, but there is nothing in it, you have to walk for miles to get to anything. The newb areas are rediculous, there aren't enough quests to get you through level 8. Now you have to go find mobs and grind a while, a long while. Did I mention the fact that the combat leaves much to be desired for what was supposed to be the NEXT GENERATION MMORPG. Save you money people this one is a bore....more info
Not the Vanguard it used to be Vanguard SOH had a lot of hype and expectation when it launched. From what I hear, the launch was pretty rough and a lot of people were very dissapointed. The old reviews reflect that.
But the VG that exists today is NOT the same game you played last year!! Sony has been working very hard on fixing things and adding stuff. They just offered a free month to previous account holders, and everyone who came back to try it out remarked on just how improved the game is overall.
If you've never tried VG, this is not your ordinary MMO. Yes, there's plenty of adventuring in a giantic, almost seamless world. 3 huge continents to explore, dungeons galore dot the maps, 16 starting races and 19 starting classes. Graphics are gorgeous and Sony is constantly bringing in improvements (like expanding on the available character creation models).
You can adventure as you would in any MMO, running around exploring, doing quests and killing things. But you can also build your own house on a plot of land of your choice, go sailing the ocean in your own boat, or delve into the spheres of crafting and diplomacy.
VG's comabt is a slight expansion on typical MMO fare. Most moves are cool-down based, but you have the addition of several layers of stances (determing more damage vs. better defense, for example), and specials that are only activated at special times (like in response to a successful dodge). There are also effects that can be triggered by a special (like stunned) that can be utilized by another class's special (if the special is linked to a 'stunned' vulnerability, it gains bonuses). Level cap is currently 50, but there is also end-game raiding available.
But if you're tired of just 'running around killing stuff' (since that's all most MMO's are), there's still so much more to do in VG. When you need a break from the adventuring grind, try out crafting or diplomacy. Unlike most other MMO's, VG crafting requires actual skill and thought, and there's consequence for goofing. All items require basic materials, some utilities (like solvent or glue) and can be enhanced with special dusts to give it bonuses. Various steps in the process can have choices of how to proceed (like choice A giving lots of completion progress, but no quality upgrade; or choice B which gives a little completion and a little quality upgrade; or choice C which gives a lot of quality upgrade, but no completion progress). You have a set number of points you can spend to complete your crafted item, and each step costs points. Run out of points and you're done, even if your item isn't. You just wasted all your materials. Run out of important materials (like a solvent) or have missing equipment and you're done, materials wasted. But crafted items are also quite decent for players in VG (unlike other MMO's where crafting is next to useless) and some things can ONLY be gotten from crafters.
Diplomacy is the third sphere in VG. It is the realm of social persuasion, where you engage in 'parley's with various NPC's to obtain gear, get permission to build a guild hall (only diplomats can get the guild hall plot) or even provide city-wide buffs. Buffs last for 1 hr usually and can be for adventurers (e.g. +to all stats), crafters (+to a crafting skil) and diplomats (add cards to your deck). Diplomacy is played out like an online card game, except that UNlike Legends of Norrath or the other MMO's, VG diplomacy is FREE! Yes, I said FREE! No buying cards online and paying even MORE money to play this game. It's included in the VG game itself.
The best part of all this is that it's YOUR choice how to play. You can level each of the three spheres (adventuring, crafting, diplomacy) completely independant of any of the others. No more required levelling just so you crafters can get that next recipie! If you don't want to go and kill things, you don't have to. Just keep working on your crafting and leave the killing to everyone else. Diplomats also can completely avoid adventuring if they want. But with so many starting classes and races, I'm sure you'll find some class to try the adventuring sphere with too. It's just really nice to have a CHOICE for a change.
And that's really what VG is about: having a choice of how you want to play. ...more info
Vanguard fails to deliver Dull and uninspiring is the only way to describe this game. There are very few elememts of this game that stand out as unique and intriguing. I should have realized that when Brad posted on the Beta Boards that it was his game and he was going to make it be only what he wanted it to be that I was doomed to be disappointed.
Crafting - Harvesting resources is nothing more than a variation on the nodes used in WoW. Star Wars Galaxies is still the only MMO with an interesting system for resources. There is no variation in quality of resources as they are harvested and the number of different resources is small when compared to SWG. The crafting itself is at first glance something interesting but as one realizes that it is just a variation of the EQ2 crafting game with the forever grind of EQ, one quickly gets bored. There is also very little to differentiate the finished products of the few crafters brave enough to endure the tedium to produce items.
Character Generation - The visuals are boring and uninteresting to look at. The animal based PC's look like human bodies with animal heads stuck to them. Even the human bodies suffer from graphic anomolies such as skinny males looking like they have boobs or deformed extruding rib cages. The unimorph system Brad choose for the bodies might make it easy to build new critters but then the critters and PC's all look the same.
Quests - Linear and boring. Kill a number of X, deliver Y to Z, or collect A from B. The storylines at the beginning do nothing to draw the character into the game. NOTE - Once you get past the tedious beginning quests, there are some storylines that are interesting.
Overall, given the lack of anything new or complex for crafters and really poor character graphics, the game is not worth it to me. ...more info
great game bought this copy of vg and subscribed it on my third SOE account, it was a great game, I started to play since it was launched!~ great visual designs, interesting contents, I've made over 85 plats, 3 Galleons, and 3 T5 Kojani houses so far :D
The bad news is that soe merged the group pvp server(my favorite) with the pvp ffa server together, so there's only one pvp ffa server left among all 4 servers, thus I'm no longer having any interests to play on pvp server. But it's fun to play on pve server as well, at least you won't have to be worried about losing plats and infamy points if get killed by another player....more info