First Look at Blade and Soul

So, for those that don't know, Blade and Soul is one of those super duper anticipated games for the last couple years. It has just been in development in so long, talk about overhyping. The development period was almost as long as Diablo 3. It was one of many games I was looking forward to trying that will take forever to release, so I jumped at the idea I could try the game.

So one of the regulars at our blog informed me that you can play Blade and Soul on a private server. Just follow link and instructions to download game. Fair warining: due to the game only being in CBT2 in Korea, the content is equally limited on this private server. There is maybe 1-2 hours worth of gameplay, just to get a feel for the general game. Almost all the text isn't translated either. Some classes don't even have HP tables implemented past level 7 and your HP will reset back down. So don't go grinding all day for nothing.

I apologize for small image, my laptop can handle top graphics settings, but max resolution on my laptop is 1300 one. I played it in windowed mode for 1024 resolution. You can find much better screenshots on forums. So after a long rant, here is my initial review of Blade and Soul:

Stunning graphics. Do I really need to elaborate further? It is self evident.

Gameplay. Nice to see more non target games, I still believe this is the wave of the future of MMOs. They also promote skill, you get counter skills to block and stun the opponent so I can assume PVP will be many mind games to guess the opponents next attack.

Engine. Very fluid gameplay, I didn't notice much trouble with anything choppy. It is nice to have a strong engine backing the game up to get less glitches.

Amazing CG scenes. Since the engine is so strong, they just animate your own character to have stunning CG scenes. Much better to see your own character in the good CG scenes.

Open World. From the looks of it, the whole map is open with almost instant load times between zones. Literally walking from one zone to another my character flinches for a second and you are done. Reduced load times are always good.

Lack of customization. From what it looks like, every character of the same class will get same skill set. It isn't translated but I am pretty sure about this.

Gameplay. The battles look stunning at first, but it will quickly get boring. The same animations every time gets repetitive, a fate no MMO can escape.

Level up animation

Not much else to say, I mean, game is still very preliminary. The flashyness of the game is always nice, I look forward to the real release of the game. Too bad  Diablo 3 will beat it at release date and I doubt I will quit that once I start. Hopefully I'll catch up on some of my blogging over the holidays for Recettear and Sword Girls Online that I played recently.