I sit down in front of my PC tonight with the intention of playing Allods Online for a couple of hours.
I played for almost eight.
I have not done that for a long, long time. I completely lost track of time and continually told myself “one more quest, one more”. Not since my vanilla WoW days have I done that or at least done it without even noticing.
I restarted my Arisen Summoner this evening because I had a couple of real life friends that were going to get started in the game tonight as well. We ended up with myself, an Arisen mage and an Orc warrior. We flew through the quests at a rapid pace and I ended up the night at level nine.
My Summoner is a really interesting class. In most ways he is like a WoW warlock. I have a DoT, a pet and later I even get a fear. However, I also have a heal and I have heard that later Summoners are among the best raid healers in the game. It is an interesting combination and one I look forward to attempting to master.
The Summoner uses a mechanic called the “Blood Pool”, many of my spells give me a drop of blood (I can bank up to ten) and many others use those drops of blood. So I find myself alternating between these spells to keep my blood pool balanced.
My pet is a skeletal/robotic scorpion that seems extremely strong. He tanks like a champ, does good DPS and actually seems to have decent pathing and A.I.. He makes it very easy to solo, though I wish they would allow a hot-key for Pet attack, as now it can only be mouse clicked.
An interesting thing about the Empire starter zone is that it is also the Capitol City. The quests take you on a long, extended tour of the city and it is a good way to learn your way around. One other advantage is that it will be easy for new players to get their questions answered as they will always have higher level players running around when they start.
The city itself is simply incredible. It is huge and very well designed, with all the amenities (trainers, crafting, auction house etc.) centrally located. The art design is especially nice and you can certainly see the Russian influence in the architecture of the buildings. As said before, there is also a heavy Nazi Germany motif going on, right down to the characters.
One thing that I really like about the city is that it is not just an instance. I really disliked how Aion and WAR treated the capital city, with it just being an instance with no zone around it. WoW, by contrast, has a zone around the city so that you can really appreciate the size of Iron Forge as you approached. This is the same way. Though I have not explored the zone surrounding the city, it seems to be pretty immense, with rolling hills and a few shattered industrial complexes. I really look forward to exploring this game.
Tomorrow night I should be seeing my first group instance. I will be posting more on that as soon as I get out. I am looking forward to seeing how Allods handles boss fights and instancing as that is one area where WAR and Aion dropped the ball to a certain extent.
My feelings about Allods have not changed. It is an extremely fun and well made game. I would play it in an instant if it followed the normal pay to play model. However, the cash shop still worries me. If they get that right, I am in in a heartbeat.