Thursday, December 9, 2010

Craft of Gods Review

Originally a subscription-based game, Craft of Gods recently opened up a free-to-play server. There's been some minor press about the game, and I liked what I saw so decided to give it a go.

Character creation was very limited. You have several races to choose from and the most basic of customization options. The graphics however were rather pretty, and the monsters were innovative.

The game starts you out with a tutorial to get you accustomed, though I've read many players thought it wasn't very good. I thought it was on-par with most game tutorials however. You have your basic starter quests, such as "kill X wolves" and "talk to this NPC", nothing special but it gets the job done.

After the tutorial, you are teleported to the game world proper, and this is where most players likely give up. The game gives you little direction on what to do, but it seems to have been on purpose to cater to the more freeform game experience. I didn't have a problem with that and continued playing.

I was able to complete a number of quests and gain some levels and skills. One of the most innovative things about this game is character progression. Instead of being on a set path, there are over a dozen different skill tress you can choose from (and you can choose from any number of trees). This gave the game an almost sandbox feel crossed with the options of say Champions Online. As far as games go, I really liked this style of character progression.

With the good however also comes the bad. Tradeskills in this game can be a bear to understand, and worse yet you can't change paths. You're allowed to pick two trades, and once selected, there's no changing or going back. In addition, many of the quest markers are improperly labeled, so you're stuck having to find the right places to finish them. I wasn't terribly put off by this as I like to explore, but it was a bit annoying.

Speaking of annoying, death in this game comes with some consequences. Back in the tutorial, you are given the chance to tame your own mount. If you die, you lose your mount and have to tame another one. While this sounds like a monor setback, it can be huge for free-to-play players as taming a mount requires an item from the cash shop. It felt like a huge penalty losing something as nice as a mount and being told, "now pay us for another one".

All in all, Craft of Gods seems like a game with great potential, but the powers that be are failing to realize that potential. I feel their cash shop is setup all wrong, and in all the game feels highly unfinished. Still if you want to check out a game with a unique character progression and an open feel, this is the game to try.

Final Rating: 3/5 stars

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