Just a quick little post about the misadventure that was Aion.
As I blogged previously, my son got an itch, while we were playing Guild Wars, to get back into Aion. For some reason he remembered some fond memory of Aion, yet forgot about all the bad involved.
He has a habit of going back to games, even though he did not like them previously. Example was Fallout 3. He bought the game on launch and died over and over. Sold the game, and never looked back. Yet, all his friends were playing and several months later, decided to try again. Gamespot made a nice profit indeed, when that copy was returned for credit.
So, Aion. We made a pact. One, I would be able to make a character on his account. Two, the wife (who talked me into buying it for him, after I hemmed and hawed using the Fallout 3 story) would also have to play beyond a specific level (5) or else pay for it out of her allowance.
As of today, the game has been cancelled.
So, what did us in. Each of us ran into issues. What pulled us out (even before the PvP)...
Lets start with my son. This one is easy. Boredom. Slow combat, lots of running here and there, annoying questing. Oh, and ready for this one? Dying! (Over and Over and Over); That spawn rate is murder for solo players.
For my wife, a lot of the same. She noted something was off as she tried to play. The interface was not as intuitive as she would have liked. Also, the camera seemed choppy to her. Since she is a crafter at heart, gathering was slow and tedious for her as well. She hit that same window of Boredom.
For myself, relatively the same Boredom. But, as I fought mobs, I was annoyed by the cutesy critters I had to battle. The music started to get on my 3rd nerve. I ended up shutting off both music and the "spell words" sounds (Ka-here-nay? WTF?). Battle was slow (especially since we have fallen into being more actioney type players). The overall experience just kept me from logging in.
You have to imagine the difference of going between WAR, Guild Wars and Aion, as I was playing all three...and which game really was jarring in respect to how it "played". The odd man out was truly Aion.
Even though it has been discussed by many that the servers are empty, game time wise, Aion still charts quite high on Xfire. At one point NCSoft stated they had 1 millions subs in the US. SUBS, not players (ooo you Tricksies Turbine and the way you guys word your press releases..."1 Million players, doubled subs since going free to play"...). I did not see as many players in the starting areas as I have in Age of Conan or WAR...even GW. Could the endgame really be that good? All I know is 10 levels was torture.
For now, Aion goes back into the "been there, done that" pile, never to fly again.