I played WoW for about two years and I loved the PvE (Player vs. Environment) and PvP (Player vs. Player) that it provided, as well as the Quests, Mounts and End Game (Battlegrounds, Raids, Epic Mounts, etc.) content. However the only problem was that I was paying $13 a month, plus the initial price of the game and the expansion (Wrath of the Lich King). I had a level 70 Feral Druid and a level 70 Rogue, but I quit before Cataclysm came out. My friends kind of lost interest, plus paying that much for a game was just not worth it in my mind. I haven't played an MMORPG in about a year, and I told myself the next MMORPG type game I would play would be Diablo 3 (which hopefully is released in 4Q11). However, I stumbled upon Allod's Online and my gaming plans instantly changed.
My Discovery Of Allod's Online
Anyway, after searching a little more, I finally stumbled upon this MMORPG called Allods Online. After reading about this game, I learned that it was published by Astrum Nival in Russia. I was shocked to see that it was a Russian game, since most of the MMORPGs I found were made by Asian Companies (except for WoW). What initially intrigued me the most was that Allods Online had a $12 million dollar budget, whereas most MMORPGs don't have anywhere close to that to work with. Originally released in 1997 in Russia, Allod's Online Open Beta testing in North America and Europe was released to the public on February 16, 2010. Even with the $12 MM budget, the game being originally released in Russia in 1997 and the F2P system, I was still hesitant downloading the 3.3+ GB client.
It took me about an hour to download the game and all of the patches. I was kind of happy the game took a relatively long time to download, as it showed me the game was constantly being updated with various fixes as well as new content. After the download, I chose one of the two servers and was then directed to the character creation screen.
Character Creation Screen
I expected to be able to choose from a few different classes, maybe ten at the most. However, to my surprise, I was given the option of choosing between a character class from The League or from The Empire (Later I would discover that The League was like The Alliance and The Empire was like The Horde. These being the two opposing factions you could choose from in WoW.) I chose to be a Summoner for The Empire and I was taken to next screen.
Again this game surprised with the amount of different character customization choices I could make. These nine different decisions included race, archetype, gender, face, facial features, hair style, hair color, skin color and figure. Yes, that's right you can choose your "figure", meaning you can be a huge beastly warrior, a small mage or average sized paladin or anything in between! In addition to this, Allods has 6 races, 8 classes and 28 totally different archetypes to choose from. In my opinion, this character creation screen was just as good, if not better than WoW's. I myself, made an average sized defiler, chose my character's name and started the Allods adventure.
First Hour Of Gameplay
Thrown into the Astral world of Allods, I immediately noticed that the User Interface was much like World of Warcraft. The top left of the screen held my character's health bar and mana bar, as well as my current level and a picture of my character. Along the bottom of the screen were various boxes, which contained my basic melee attack and starting spells that I was given.
Next, the game made me go through a tutorial where I learned how to move around, and target and attack enemies. I ran through an astral ship defeating enemies and I even got to shoot a cannon at an enemy ship. Once the tutorial was over, I leveled and I gained 1 stat point and 1 talent point. When choosing which stat to increase, there were five stars to show which were the main stats for my class (one next to each stat). For the talent tree, I was limited to choose from one of 3 skills at first, but there are 16 skills in total that you can eventually unlock.
I finished the tutorial and then I arrived in Nezebgrad where I have been doing quests and leveling up ever since.
Here are some other features I found out about Allods so far:
#1. Fatigue When you gain EXP through killing monsters and doing quests, you gain the same amount of fatigue exp each day, up until a certain point (If you gain 300 exp you will gain 300 fatigue exp). You can turn in this fatigue exp for real exp by visiting a Goblin Innkeeper. This fatigue system was designed to give casual players a way to level up quickly, without having to play 8+ hours a day. I found if you play for more than 6 hours a day you usually use up all of your fatigue exp for the day.
#2. No Auto-Attack Unlike in WoW, you cannot auto-attack, but instead you must constantly choose which attack you want to use each and every time. However, if you can summon a minion, you can make the minion auto-attack enemies.
#3. Talent Grid Starting at level 10, you can use rubies to buy squares in your talent grid. Most of these squares improve the skills that you have already unlocked, while some squares are entirely new skills within themselves. Example: You spend talent points to unlock a damage over time (DOT) spell called Putrify. One square you can buy increases the time the spell lasts by 10%.
#4. Professions Very similar to WoW you can learn professions, although you can only have one when you first start the game. The gathering professions are Disassembling, Herbalism and Mining and the crafting professions are Alchemy, Blacksmithing, Leatherworking and Tailoring. Your profession can be leveled up to (your current level * 10). So if you are level 10 and you are a herbalist, you can only advance to level 100 in herbalism.
#5. Rubies With every level-up you will receive one ruby voucher, and with that voucher and a little bit of gold (the amount of gold depends on your character's level) you can buy one ruby from your class trainer. You can also do a few World Mystery quests in order to gain rubies as well.
#7. Cash Shop Though it is F2P, Allods has a cash shop, which gives the player the option to pay actual $ in order to get advantages in the game. Examples: You can buy a one-time use item that gives double experience for 2 hours or you can buy an item that allows you to have another profession. All in all I don't think the Cash Shop will put non-paying players at a serious disadvantage. However, I believe that it will help paying players advance more quickly through the game.
Currently I have been playing Allods for about three days and I have reached level 14. My ultimate goal is to get to level 42 (the current max level cap), and I really want to get to level 35, because that is where the quests start to build your own ship. I read that you get to travel through the astral in the end-game and attack other player's ships, board their ships and then steal their treasure! I heard this may take a few months to get this far, but the players I asked say it is well worth it.
I have played this game for only three days and I already believe that it is a better overall game than WoW. The best part is that you do not have to spend a dime to play it! I'm sure when word gets around about this game, many WoW players will switch over to Allods Online.
Feel free to comment on this post if you have any questions that you want me to answer about Allods Online.