Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning – the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

As an avid MMORPG player, I have heard about Warhammer Online being released for a number of months until recently it was finally released. I purchased and downloaded the game directly online from Direct2Drive and got to playing.
The first thing I noticed was the excessive and completely unnecessary bombardment of introductory graphics amp; sounds. Having to go through three or four of these five-second company logo clips is extremely irritating, especially in the midst of a conversation in Ventrilo or Teamspeak. Obviously this is expected since most companies want to boast about their creation but the addition of extraneous sound effects and low key music really makes starting up the game a minor annoyance.

Anyways, as we continue to venture into Warhammer Online it becomes quite evident why it was so highly anticipated. The game revolves around this “Realm vs. Realm” concept which was a huge success in Mythic’s previous game “Dark Age of Camelot”. This RvR concept is quite interesting and EAMythic has every right to flaunt it considering how exciting attacking or defending a keep can be. Of course there is a downside to this. A player will not be exposed to this RvR concept until level 40 and even then, if your character isn’t properly geared then you can expect to be repeatedly killed – But before I jump this far ahead I feel it is fair to discuss some of the early level experiences.

The first thing I noticed is how much Warhammer Online follows the typical MMORPG cliché. The first thing you will notice is the main stream method of leveling is (you guessed it) questing. The quests are exactly as expected, kill 8 of this mob, find 5 spoiled mushrooms, slay this boss mob, and so on. Nothing out of the ordinary but Mythic did implement something never really seen before.

Public Quests is an alternate route of leveling which also gives you area influence experience, which at the end can be turned in for some decent items. This is cool but a major flaw with this is the oversaturation of public quests in a giant zone. You will quite frequently find yourself in a situation where there aren’t enough public at one public quest due to so many other ones. Public quests though should not be misconstrued as a good source of experience. It generally isn’t, the experience is just a benefit from gaining Area Influence XP at the same time.

Well – You will find yourself doing these quests and public quests for all the way to 40. Along the way you can join scenarios which can be basically compared to World of Warcraft’s battlegrounds. Scenarios are a great source of experience and can be enjoyable if you know what you are doing. This was a major annoyance to me, the fact that I didn’t know what our team was supposed to be doing. The only hint you receive is a extremely vague popup message which goes something along the lines of “The Troll has been Pacified” or similar depending on the scenario you are in. With enough time I finally figured out the extremely strange game concept Mythic implemented for scenarios. It goes along the line of grabbing a central object and taking it to grounded artifacts.

Well I would love to continue to rant about the game but I personally feel that there isn’t enough to rant about since the entire game is pretty much revolves around the concept of what I mentioned above. I purposely left out hardware / computer specification issues because it wasn’t an issue for me – although a few of my friends did have problems with it which indirectly effected me. Regardless, I don’t recommend diving into this game anytime soon. It has lots of issues and inconsistencies which need to be addressed by EAMythic. I am sure it will be a great game in a few months from now, but in the mean time there is no rush to buy this game other than for the experience.