Monday, May 16, 2016

How Beginner-friendly is Aion Online?





Most people playing Aion online will agree that the game is a wonderfully put-together IP, with great design and - though the engine powering its graphics may be somewhat dated - superb sights down the line, when higher levels are reached. The problem is however that regardless of the great content the title offers and of the depth of its PvP scene, beginners will find it difficult to grow to like it, especially those who are impatient with games that can be rather easily mistaken for a generic F2P MMO clone which barely warrants a second glance. This is what I took away from a "first impression" video I watched the other day, in which the person putting the game to the test, came to the conclusion that it was poorly designed, ugly, with blocky and unrewarding combat and that it was simply not worth playing. That makes it obvious that the title is not putting up a decent-enough front to attract new players, or at the very least, it is missing out on many potential new players because of how it presents itself to beginners.

To try to somewhat alleviate that problem, I've come up with a few guidelines that are likely to address some of the problems new players my find especially irksome.

The fact that flying time is limited in the game is one of the oft-decried sensitive points of Aion Online. There is however a rather solid reason why this is the case: the game is very PvP-focused, and since draining the flying time of one's opponent in combat is possible, limited flying time is in fact one of the strategic aspects of PvP, which lends it further depth.

Having to walk back and forth between various quest-appointed destinations can be massively annoying indeed, especially if one is forced to do it in slow-motion. In Aion Online there are flypoints in every one of the bigger settlements, so there is in fact a legit workaround when it comes to covering large distances in the game.

Resurrection is another major problem for beginners, at least for those who do not know that the soul-system of the game allows them to tie their souls to different stones which are present in all the major quest-hubs, so this way they do indeed have control over where they will resurrect following their latest ill-concluded caper.

The limited size of the inventory is indeed one of the shallowest beginner-problems of the game. In the very first city, the inventory can be significantly expanded, and later on, it can be expanded more, so towards the end-game, one will have more than 600 inventory slots at his/her disposal.

The way quests show up on the map may not be the most intuitive, but certainly, there's a way to have exactly the quest you're interested in show up on your map. Checking quests will activate them, and active quests will show up, together with every notice that concerns them.

Hopefully, that answers some of the issues beginners may have with Aion Online. It is - at the end of the day - a very far cry from a generic F2P clone. It is a vibrant world, featuring a deep combat system and a PvP-heavy nature some MMO fans will certainly appreciate.

Philip Thalberg is an e-Sport maniac and a Gosuteam member since 2004.

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