A promising beta....
On the graphic department, you need a pc on steroid to be able to really enjoy this game. The requirements, written on the box, are not really accurate, don’t expect good graphic and smooth frame rate with a mid range pc (read: recommended specification) and to me, the graphic of this game, don’t justify the hardware requirement. On many area EQ2 look better and more alive, and it doesn’t require 1500$ + investment on a new pc to enjoy some graphic goodies. The environments look good, they are well rendered and all, but the character are ugly. They have this ‘plastic doll' feel, it’s almost like you were playing with Ken or Barbie. Also the animations are lacking to say the least. The combat animations are ok, I guess, but everything else looks like crap. On that note you character doesn’t have any facial animation even in combat, like I said they look like a plastic doll.
The music sound good, but other then that, there’s nothing special in the sound department. The combat and levelling system doesn’t bring anything new to the table. Unlike Wow, the dungeon are no instanced and can bring their fair amount of fun on the first attempt, but considering the length of those and the time you will need to spend there , not sure if it’s still gonna be fun after you’ve done it 2-3 time’s. Like every mmo, the best way to get more level is to complete some quest and kill some mob. Like I said, not only it doesn’t bring anything new to the table, it fell a like a carbon copy of wow. The quest system is the same, kill X number of Y mob; collect Z number of that thing etc etc, rinse repeat. On top of that, Vanguard introduces some death penalty. So after a couple of unexpected add and death, the grind becomes old very very quickly.
Vanguard brings a new crafting system and it’s nicely done. But, sadly, like the rest of the game, some bugs will prevent you from fully enjoying the it. There’s also a diplomacy system, it’s some sort of a mini card game, but between the crash, bug and server restart, I didn’t really had the time to try. In the end, Vanguard feels like a average mmo to me. It’s another EQ/wow clone with some extra. The worst part is, I really feel like I have bought a beta. Every mmo got their share of issue at release but I never see so many problems in any other game… mmo or not, Vanguard is really a unfinished and unpolished product. I would stay away from that game for a while. p.s.: English is not my primary Language hope I have been clear enough =S