Monday, June 22, 2015

A Brief Moment for Pathfinder Online

...I said I would play the free trial, and I did.

You can do the same, but I don't hate you, so I can't earnestly recommended it. Now, for a list of eleven observations about Pathfinder Online that were revealed in about two sessions of 15 minutes of game play each (the maximum time I could afford my free trial before getting annoyed and bored all at once):

1. Open quest giver does not repeat text. Could not find copy of the text to figure out what I was doing wrong.

2. I found and killed many skeletons before finding goblins. When I did find goblins there were six of them and they ganked me instantly. Unlike skeletons which I could kill multiples of before dying.

3. When the goblins killed me I didn't actually know it at first, appearing at the graveyard so quickly I was trying to figure out what happened to the fight....had I been teleported? But I was at the gravestone, so I must have died.

4. You know how in other MMOs they give you a variety of interesting queues for how long your attacks cycle, or if your target is in range? PO doesn't do that.

5. Someone forgot to remove the rod from my avatar's ass so he can run like a normal human.

6. There was an NPC titled "Starting Quest Giver" or somesuch (I deleted it already or I'd log in for the exact title) but I couldn't get him to talk.

7. The game expected me to charge out and forge my destiny. I think. I get that this is the point of the game, but I couldn't even get past the basic warrior quest to find out what was next.

8. Player introductory rules are found in a PDF at the loader screen.

9. The character animations are...ah....okay--for a budget indie title. This is a budget indie title, right?

10. The game's main problem is it is trying to compete in a dominion of space where few have succeeded, and the ones that do are massively developed monster games like WoW, Guild Wars 2, and The Elder Scrolls Online. Just playing PO made me appreciate GW2 and TESO a lot more, actually. Making a game like this that's fun is hard.

11. And finally! I can't say Pathfinder Online had much to brand it as a Golarion setting, but those goblins definitely looked like PF goblins, so kudos for that.

So....I'll keep this on the radar, and am interested in what it looks like in another year or two after it moves from "early pre-alpha" to maybe an early beta level of testing.


I actually really wanted to be surprised by PO, as technically I am a frontline candidate for a Pathfinder MMORPG. I would love to play something with a recognizably Pathfinder experience tied to it. But I am not an EVE Online fan, and not a fan of the concept behind open-world sandbox pvp games (at least, not presented as MMOs; the concept works great in the "other open-world sandbox" genre of games which drop you on desert islands filled with zombies, pirates, dinosaurs, cannibals and murderous co-players.)

So I am sad to see that PO in its current state seems to have very little invested in the front end of the experience...I get that it may be designed to appeal to the hardcore who want no hand-holding, carebears beware and all that....but right now I wouldn't even say that the opening events are "hardcore"....they're just unpolished. Rough. There's a lot missing, and it's not just some hand-holding.

1 comment:

  1. My experience with it also. The game is no longer on my computer.