Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Game Review - WarTune

Score +3/-6
From the website: "Featuring three unique classes, single and multi-player dungeons, PvP arenas, competitive battlegrounds, thousand-player boss battles, a robust guild system, and… farming, Wartune combines some of your favorite features from multiple game genres. Whether you consider yourself a casual gamer or a hardcore veteran, Wartune will keep you coming back for more."

The English version of WarTune is presently a partially converted version of their Chinese version, Divine Comedy. It is fully playable, but the conversion is far from complete (e.g., no mounts).

WarTune generally revolves around building up your character with stats and equipment, and like most MMO games there's a lot of gear you can get and upgrade. However, this also means that most of your time will be spent staring at your city or game interfaces rather than getting out in the game world. The game world is very limited as it is and 2.5D -- basically they are token places to look for special loot.

WarTune presently has significant complaints about certain player-versus-player systems such as their Battlegrounds team PvP where many players aren't truly participating but using an automated "Away From Keyboard" mode. Gameplay may never be changed as this is apparently a port of a presumably tried and true MMO.

We played two Mages to L28 and L31 respectively. Over the next few days, we'll present some tips for playing the game. For now, here are our initial impressions.
+ No shortage of things to do. Your time online can be busy for hours and at all hours of the day. If you really want to spend that much time. If you actually like what you are doing in the game (essentially just inching your character forward to more gear and more power), then you may not mind the repetitiveness. You can even be logged in and not do anything, and your character could still be doing something (e.g., collecting Stamina points in the Altar of Ennoblement.)
- Incredible amount of time-consuming, boring, grinding. There are so many things to do each day, and the system encourages you to do almost all of them for maximum daily free stuff. However, it all takes time and none of it helps you advance in the storyline very much. If you play this game, don't expect to follow the story quickly past level 30 -- and that's not very much story at all. (On the other hand, if you keep playing WarTune, you're not really playing for the story. You're playing to make a powerful character for the Arena.)
+- Artwork is nice overall, but very limited in variety, and only special equipment shows up differently in-game.
+ Not a lot to learn and easy to learn it. You can get into the game right away.
- Ludicrously unbalanced in various ways. For example, some of your highest daily experience point awards can come from (and I am not kidding) playing flash games like Whack-A-Mouse (mouse pops up, you hit it with a leg of ham) or QTE exercises (correctly press a sequence of arrow keys). A single short flash game can easily earn you more than a Multiplayer Dungeon run.
- Experience and rewards for doing inane things. For example, one of the tasks just about everyone does every day is speak in World Chat, because this advances a "Devotion" counter that gives you free stuff when you reach various point totals. Often, people don't have anything useful to say and type garbage.
- Accounts cannot be transferred to another server, or deleted. You only get one account per server. This means you must start over with a new community in a different server if you want to restart your character. This also means that at any one time, there may be hundreds of abandoned accounts on your server, and it's hard to say who's who.
- Not a lot to see. There aren't a lot of locations to visit, and once you hit level 25-30, it gets harder to gather proper resources and upgraded troops to access new maps. And new map are the only thing that changes the scenery. If you are there for the PvP arena, that's a different story. You'll probably not even care about the story except that you have to go through those motions every day to get the bonus experience, gold, and goods that come with doing more things.

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