ok so here we go, let me know how this turns out:
In this I am going to list several MMO's and then compare to to what I have learned/know of FOA and the direction the dev's are headed.
This is mainly to cover for newcomers and maybe point out some things for others:
Lets tackle the first on the list:
dwarf's elves and fantasy land.
You have seen the commercials <advertising and indorcements> and ok yeah might look kool, but you gotta bear in mind the following:
1) It's evercrack with a newer engine that came out at the right time.
2) you have to rind grind grind to get anywhere
3) alpha on character make them look brighter but not a lot of detail
---btw this is a simi biast view from an alpha tester they never listened too
4) character skills modify weapon damage etc <My staff though same as yours, does more damage>
5) been mimicked by tons of other game developers.
Playwise its based off an old engine by todays comparisons, character development is not as detailed as should be for a character based game. Being that its an old engine you can run off a old P2 computer so you don't need to upgrade anything if you haven't dusted your computer off in the past 5 years. Though you might like dressing up your elves and dwarfs for fun, clothing is limited to underwear and then armor. Instant action is built in, but you have to grind grind grind some more to accomplish anything.
futuristic, fantasy game.
1) more realistic graphics than WoW, but bear in mind its not past fantasy, it is future fantasy
2) tons and tons of content/items/upgrades for items/modifications for items <you could get lost in all of it>
3) built on a different engine than wow it is still old by todays standards. see P2 statement above
4) grindage again. Farm this kill that over and over and over again.
5) and of course character skills modify weapon and armor efficiency
the short run of AO is that you gotta grind to accomplish something. Being a character based game there is tons of things you can do to modify your character, including social wear, this can be over encompassing and confusing at times. course the usual, I been playing for 5 years so my guns do more damage. spells extra powers etc make it more in depth and more confusing at times. Over complicating the system does cause for occasional mis calculations.
Dungeons and Dragons Online:
The long awaited original mas played game finally came to the net. and bombed.
1) copied engine that dozens have already had in place and been abused.
2) character creation is nicely in depth, but lacking the confines that dwarfs and elves etc should
3) again with the damn alpha channel, whats is up with this crap. Seriously you play a sniper/rogue/sneaky character you don't want to glow.
4) GRIND, again with the grinding thing, Along with the My Damage is better than yours but we have the same weapons
5) Fully integrating the D&D experience into a MMO = FAILED, creating another grinder = pass
Over all time testing and even trying to play it has missed what D&D was all about. ROLE PLAY. You want another wow/ao/everything else here you go. Gamers already have calculations for best team of tank, damage, healer and how to build these and what to do to build these. Hey, you are done. It's all been done before, and you don't have to work at it. well of course other than grinding.
Lets tackle something without a copied engine or seriously outdated.
1) Patience my apprentice. Right out of the gate you will learn you have to wait MONTHS before your character is good enough for anything useful.
2) Gankers/Sploiters are loving the work you do and the kills they get from you. If you are not in a large PvP org and in certain sectors, these "Ninjas" will use the game mechanics to take all your hard work and laugh at you if you try and do anything.
3) More time and patience. combat is simple by design, you engage, orbit and walk away to get a new soda, bio break, mow the yard. You have NO control over flying your ship. It is all automatic. Your skills of flying matter not.
4) Character development looks good, but means nothing. You never use your character in this game but skills, those make a world of difference again. Same gun, better damage, year + training it out.
5) Graphics are real good in this <thanks to overworking the graphics engine> however they cheated. Lots of graphics are blured together as "effect" but it is so they do not spend lots of time on detail.
Overall eve is a game of patience vrs impatience. Again you have grinding system in place, but this is not to improve your character, it is more to obtain what you want. The market economy in this game is atrocious. As a living breathing Player controlled market it fluctuates as much as the NY stock exchange on crack. Overall Eve was a new system when everyone was getting bored of all the copycats out there. It provided the possibility of a space MMO that many space fighter players had been waiting for, and they found lacking. Think of it as a facebook app in 3D with faster communication then posting on your FB page.
Be warned of the obvious <read eve section first>
This is closed beta testing atm.
1) Everything EVE, but in robots on a planet and the actual ability to drive <WASD> instead of orbit.
2) Graphics no better than eve, however this one is a resource hog at the moment. <twin 9800gt's in sli config and peak fans + heat>
3) Destructible environment. Plants rocks and trees go by by but bland and ever pointless.
4) Mining is as monotonous as in eve however takes 1 extra step for scanning.
5) Patience again. Thought it doesnt take days to train your skills, you get skill points over days to spend on skills.
Yeah so long run you are taking the eve engine, playing robots with it, and they are trying to sell it off as NOT EVE. I say robots cause these sure as hell aint mechs. Take Earthsieg, Cross it with transformers and color it with teletubies on LSD. These are things that a 5yr old could build with a lego castle set. And wtf, the robot has a HP bar and shield bar? I understand the shield <built off eve mechanics> but an HP bar? You shoot me in the arm I am nearly dead scenario... seriously AGAIN? So this plus Eve = AO & Wow = evercrack all with a new engine, new interface, OLD GAMING CONVENTION
ALL OTHER MMO's built off same engines.
1) not only is there tons of these out here its all the same thing. No matter what it looks like
2) 0% originality. Creativity is only in the poor guy drawing the graphics and maybe doing the modeling so it LOOKS different.
3) Grinda grinda grinda. <going to insert link to page on these forums about "grind" here>
4) Character creation is REPEAT garbage. Ok so its textured differently? read #2 again
5) Weapons and skills all modify anything therefore lacking realism of effect.
Pick your desire, ninjas, elves, munchkins, ogres, wearbears and vampires. All the same. Nothing new. Jack the alpha channel up to make EVERYTHING glow, add some content to make it look different. Ok so not middle ages, lets go out in the wild, change texture to woodland and now we have a 2nd game
Wait change texture again to red and stone and we have a martial arts game... spam 30 different games off same game. Anyone get the feeling that UT modders are trying to get their 15 mins of fame and make a fast buck only to find they have FAILED in RL?
Ok so these are the ones I am going to bash to hell and show you what I know of FOA to be, to become, and where it can go. <BTW you can read ALL of this in forums, listen to dev chats etc>
1) Dev's hate the grind. So they avoiding it like the black plague.
2) UNLIKE every other game out there trying to claim they are nothing like another, WD is doing it. You get shot in the arm on your mech, your arm toast.
3) Alpha channel? Yeah they have one, but they also have real modelers and artists working on this thing, so why glare out good work.
4) My Gyro jet cannon does more damage than yours cause I trained this that and the other and been here for 5 years.... NOT happening. A gyro jet cannon does X amount of damage. <you see that period there, it means this is a statement. Unlike other games where that means there are exceptions.
5) Click auto attack, go mow yard, win uber boss fight, and repeat. NOT. According to the devs, You be dead on this one. If you do not pay attention you are toast.
Ok right off the bat, FOA by WD IS NOT another typical MMO. This is a expanding, growing, developing mmo of what a mech game should be. WD is making what an MMO should be. Lets put player vrs player something of skill <the natural kind, not this grind to get, or train and then uberness> They are taking away the dullness of auto attack and walk away. All other MMO's require some sort of paying attention, this I know, but that's push this button, push this one, healers actually have to stay there and debuffers cause yeah occasionally they have to do something out of turn. What I have gathered so far is in FOA, you best run, you best maneuver, you best pay attention. You can not carry tons of ammo to stay out for days and not ever worry about running out. You can not stand out in middle of nowhere running circles for months on end without coming in... there is the matter of FUEL RUNNING OUT. And, seriously do you want to hotfoot it back across miles of desert with the possibility of someone driving by and stepping on you? <BTW tonage counts. Don't stand under a moving mech. Mechanics hate scraping dead people off the bottoms of mechs feet.>