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Aion Review: New Generation of MMO or Same Old Grind?

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I really expected this game to be the next generation of MMO. I probably helped contribute to this so called "Aion hype fanbase", but after playing this game i realized it was not  the groundbreaking, revolutionary thing that would be the "next generation of MMO", but instead it was the same old mechanics of every other post-WOW mmo out there. It does sets the bar for a higher for the quality games and offers a unique enviroment and beautiful graphics.

"I will start with an unbias review and will leave my bias opinions at the end because I am an *** "
 

Revolutionary Graphics never seen before
The graphics of the game are without a doubt what makes it the most visual appealing mmo out there. There has never been such a high standard of detail in mmos shown like this and which probably makes it the most graphically demanding mmo in history.

Just looking at the characters,scenic backgrounds and water reflection makes people go "woah **** thats amazing" Heck it even amazes me. I remember people use to say things like "mmos aren't graphically demanding" or "pssh i could play that on my 6 year old computer", well not anymore !!

 

Flying
One of the biggest appeal in aion is the flying aspect. You get a flying quest at lvl 10 and there is a time limit to how long you can stay in the air. The ability to fly makes it convenient for players and looks pretty darn ****ing cool (wings and everything). But the most interesting thing about flying is battling in the air. Thats right, player vs player combat.... in the air !! Sure you can fly around and in the end it turns into a hack and slash cluster. But nevertheless flying is pretty awesome and fun to use for exploring the aion world.


Interface and Gameplay:
The interface and gameplay  is very identical to WOW. Actually a lot of things about aion are very "wow-like" . But the one thing that stands out is stigmas. Stigma stones allow the player to use abilities from another class and is equipped in a "stigma panel." I am not sure the max stigma stones you can hold in your panel, but I currently can hold two. As your levels progress, you will gain more stigma slots.

Aion also likes to reward people who play or grind the game with something called Divine Power. The more you kill the more Divine Power you get (although i don't see what is so divine about killing stuff). Divine Power is required to use "super-skills" and disappears once you log off.

 
Best MMO of the Year?
Hey its possible. The year 2009 doesn't have the best outlook for mainstream mmos, but who knows what else could come its way and Aion is probably on the top of the list right now.

Why I am disappointed? (My Opinion)

Ya you probably seen on forums and stuff people shouting "WoWclone" or "WoWkiller" about this game, but let me tell you, this game is definitely not a Wow killer. I know there is a die hard fan base for Aion especially on mmosite (since it is very hyped up), but don't keep your expectations too high. It might be just all the hype but I really expected more from this game.

I know that people dislike comparing mmos to WOW but using WOW as a comparison is probably very well suited for Aion . First thing is that I especially hate using WoW terms but it is hard to distinguish the gameplay in Aion as anything but...

Next to runes of magic, i have never seen another game that resembled wow so closely. That is right. WoW and Aion would go hand in hand. But WoW would be like the little kid and Aion is like the big brother. Aion gives a more mature feeling compared to crudeness of WoW. It is strange that it is "like WoW, but not like WoW."

Actually just to show you the similarities i'll use Steparu's ingame footage he used during a "mission" back in april for chinese OB.

Final Thoughts
Nevertheless this is a good game. Even if the hype brings the game to shame a bit, it will probably be the best mmo of the 2009 (for now). I don't see this as something that will de-throne WoW, but it is a good alternative. According to NCsoft, the future of aion is going to be a p2p game (boo !!). Whether it stays afloat or not all depends on the community because  p2p is always risky business but if you can pull it off you make tons of $. Also it probably doesn't matter if you play the korean or EU version of the game (but the korean version feels much more "complete" if i may say).

I probably won't play it though because I get bored pretty fast (and because i am a bias prick)