- endless customization
- fun co-op play online and trading items and money with friends online
- level based drops
- many types of toons to play
- camera angles that float with no way to control except constant recentering
- annoying long cut scene when your toon dies
- firearm jams during co-op
- falling thru the maps during co-op play
- best items drop for toons your not currently playing
- save progress only saves character and items not play progress
I was disappointed with the game at first, it seemed like everything about it was just off. The controls were not adjustable. The camera view would seem to move just the right way so I could not see who I was supposed to be fighting with. The lock on system was (and I still believe is) based more on luck then skill. The salvage system will automaticaly clear the lowest value items from my inventory to make room for new items if I set it to ‘smart’.
When you first start playing this game these things seem unnatural and just plain wrong. The thing is that, until you have played thru the game and gotten used to the way it works, you don’t appreciate the time and effort that went into this game. The auto salvage system is good for experts, not new players. The controls do work once you understand them, and the lock-on system ... well it is controllable to a point but there is luck involved.
Playing this game you have the option of controlling one of ten types of characters or Toons, a champion, a berserker, a bio-engineer, a commando, and a defender. I know your saying “thats only five, Did you forget how to count unk”? actually no each of these classes has specific strengths and weaknesses. All of them have the option of staying a complete human or being medically converted to a cybernetic, or if you prefer a cyborg. This choice will have the effect of making the major damage you do based on the type of weapon you have equipped or on a skill that is bestowed by Odin. Which means you have 10 types of toons to play thru the game with. One of the things that you will find out during this game is that you have to make a lot of choices about skills. Do not worry because these choices are not carved in stone. But your toons are limited to a level cap of 50 in this first part and base skill point total of 95. You can change your mind at any time and re-skill your toon to more completely match your play style. Be forewarned though it comes with a price, you must spend money to change your skills and the cost increases each time you re-skill either side of your skill tree. Speaking of which I played thru the first 2 levels without understanding that with a simple click of the right trigger there was a second tree to access. This is the human or cybernetic tree that you get at the end of the first chapter. As with all things there is a trade off as a cybernetic you get access to cannons which have very powerful grenades at upper levels, if you stay completely human you do not get to use cannons, but you get access to some very cool ruiners which do massive amounts of damage to multiple foes.
Note* you still get ruiners as a cybernetic but like I said earlier they are based on the current weapon you have equipped each weapon type has a ruiner assigned to it. I haven’t explored all of them but the ones I have used do a decent amount of damage, certainly enough to get you out of that sticky situation.
Fans of Diablo will be right at home with the drop system
Fans of Diablo will be right at home with the drop system and if you haven’t played Diablo drops or rewards for vanquishing foes are based on a color system with name prefixes and suffixes which give bonuses, the many types of things that you get can be customized with runes and colored the way you like. These color modules will have various effects dependent on the type of armour so check them all, also the items and armours you use in the game can be matching sets which will give bonus stats if you complete the set. The same goes for charms, charms are a place for you to give yourself bonus stats, that as long as you have it activated you enjoy the benefits all the time no matter which armour you have on. The charm system works by giving you rewards based on completing different tasks in the game. One of the charms to activate it needs you to find and kill 10 leaders, once you have done that, then all the runes you have put into the charm are working all the time. So far there are 3 tiers of ruins, first tier charms can be inserted into tier 2 charms and so on with tier 3 charms. This is in my opinion the best place to spend all the best runes you find, as once you have it activated and equipped you never lose them, by selling them off when you find another better piece of armour or change weapons.
So far it is only two player co-op, which is disappointing but hopefully a patch will fix this in the future
One of the things that many people find to be frustrating is that there are no kinds of health potions and your life bar does not refill on its own, except when you level up or have a bio-engineer in the party. Speaking of party the developers told us that this was going to be a 4 player co-op game. So far it is only two player co-op, which is disappointing but hopefully a patch will fix this in the future. Back to the health drop system, it is based on how many foes you destroy and if you destroy a chest and your health bar is not full you will find health instead of bounty or money. Another annoying thing is that you will kill your foes when low on heath, as they tend to mob you and while running from foe to foe you will take damage and die with a health pick up 2 (in game feet) away from you that should have found its way to you, but it was one that dropped from killing something earlier that you ran away from while going after another foe while you still had a full health bar or you just were not close enough for it to get picked up. This is extremely annoying because when you die, even though there is no real penalty for your death, you do have to sit thru a very long (approx 15 second) (Did I mention Annoying?) cut scene of a Valkyrie floating down from the sky and lifting your body up to Valhalla. This is especially fun when playing thru the single player campaign, when you cannot have a bio-engineer with you to heal you and you have to fight 4 different trolls one that slows, one that freezes,one that burns, and one that shoots grenades.
There are many secret areas scattered thru out the game that reward you when you find them with really good drops and allot of them are challenge based. Sometimes you have to fight thru wave after wave of foes to a final boss without dying, because if you die inside the secret area, you get booted out and have to replay the level to get back in. Other times you will be under a time constraint and must kill the last boss before time runs out to get the best item drops.The exception being certain areas will allow you to die depending on how far you have made it thru, but you will never know if you will get respawned or booted so make sure you have plenty of health and the best armour and weapons set before you try one. There are also secret areas in cyberspace which are accessed thru cyber wells. Cyberspace is an area you can access anytime you like during the game and you will find many wonderful things inside, and things you will have to do to have an effect in the outside world like throw a rock thru the wall to open a door. No enemies to fight but areas are restricted to your toon, dependent on how far along you have progressed thru the game. Make sure to go back in after you have gotten the burn power while playing in the last level of the game (found at a well about 1/5th of the way thru) by taking the time to go back into the cyberspace levels you have already played you will get many drops, charms and runes which will help you survive the final battle.
the game truly starts to shine. Because you get to trade items and money with your friends
After you have beaten the game, well any time you want really, you can go to Aesire and go back thru levels you have played before using the transport system, this is also where you set up co-op games and when the game truly starts to shine. Because you get to trade items and money with your friends and everything you fight in the game is based on your level as you play thru. This will come in handy because all the best drops for your toons will often fall while playing a different toon or will be given to the other person during co-op.
The drops are level based as well so if you set up a game as a level 25 toon and you invite a friend in that is a level 10 he is going to die allot, but will be rewarded with much more experience and better drops. Well unless you try to keep him alive. Sadly there is no way to kill team mates so no tk’ing which will probably tell most Toggers that this is a game to rent only, and if you do make sure you save some space on your hard drive for this game and keep it until the next part of the game comes out (hopefully not another 14 years away) all those epic charms, runes, weapons and things you find will come in handy during the second part of the game.
With 14 years in developement, it has some issues that could have been taken care of to make it better. I was gob smacked when I jumped up on the back of a troll during the second level of an online game was thrown off its back and not only off its back but clear out of the map! Falling under the map and watching different parts of the level and items float by me as I fell thru this dark void with nothing I could do. I could not help but think, this is just unacceptable for a game that long in developement. This is a “rent it” game worth playing to get used to and to prep for the next parts, but buy it if you need to spend endless hours finding and completing matched sets of armour and weapons (like me) or those epic charms, runes, armour and weapons. Over all I have to give this portion of the game a 3.5 out of 5.
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