Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach Reader Review
Alright, I'm coming out of the closet... I'm a nerd... I love DnD... I love videogames... but after two weeks of trying to force feed myself this game I am left crestfallen and short fifty bucks.
I played the Beta and had my issues with it and I bought my retail copy hoping that these would have been resolved. I was wrong...In fact, instead I only found more reasons to hate it.
The UI is clumsy and cluttered for starters. With all the tool windows open you are left looking through a space on your monitor the size of a baseball. It takes an ambidextrous juggler to figure it out (or a 14 year old with no life).
When they say that Solo adventuring would be limited, what they really meant was non-existent. You are forced to join parties to get even the smallest amount of XP. For the guy who has a real life and just wants to hop on for a few minutes before going out with his girl (attention geeks, girls are like men, but with breasts and not your mom)it's almost impossible. There are no random roaming baddies to kill...just the same ole quests...
And, if you are unfortunate enough to find yourself injured or killed and out of healing magic, you'll wind up at the local tavern...the only place a character can regenerate hit points...and they do it at real time. You may be wondering what watered down ale and under-cooked food has to do with healing HPs? It reminds me of the time I broke my ankle skateboarding and my roomate asked me if I wanted to go the emergency room. "No!" I replied, "Take me to the nearest tavern or pub. A bottle of mead and I'll be right as rain..."
But Lord H, I want to see my character grow and develop...well, Turbine screwed the pooch on this one too. Instead of the standard 20 to 40 levels of advancement one would get from DnD, here you only get ten...and it takes more XP to earn each of these levels as well. So, by the time you finish the game you will have a tenth level hero, mediocre in every way. But dont worry, you can just make a new character and experience the EXACT SAME QUESTS from a new point of view. Hoozah! (that's Nerdese for whoopty-doo).
I'm so sick of reviewers handing out accolades for this game being "true to the spirit of DnD". Beware, they are only fanboys that would buy anything with the official Wizards of the Coast liscense. The only thing that this game carries over from the Pen and Paper version is a few names and the character creation.
In my honest opinion, Turbine rolled a Critical Failure on their Craft Videogame skill check. Good job guys, maybe next time you'll listen to what your fanbase wants in a game (lord knows that your forums are full of these same complaints). If you are reading this review, save yourself the trouble and go buy the Neverwinter Nights Diamond Pack. Its true DnD Gaming with more free formed play. So, cancel your DDO accounts and return the unused portion to Turbine.
2 / 10