Diversification in Allods Online
“Why are you writing about Allods Online so much Keen?!”
It’s the game that I’m currently playing each day, investing time in, and exploring during a beta phase. I’m not in the STO beta. I’ve told you guys about all the others games that I’m playing already. I could write about Modern Warfare 2, Team Fortress 2, or Solitaire but that wouldn’t be any more interesting. In a comment posted not too long ago, one of my readers said that they appreciate my tolerance for trying new things. That was one of the best compliments I’ve had in a long time. It’s also one of the driving forces behind this blog. I do my best to at least try everything and then relay my thoughts to you guys.
To continue my Allods commentary, yesterday was a great day for the game. There were several GM’s online and talking to the players. Maybe they done it before, but I’ve never seen them communicating nor have I seen a real two-way interaction from anyone behind the game, even if it’s just a GM and not a developer. +1 for communication. They also added Waters of Life and Waters of Death to the auction house for 1 copper each and continued to do so many times throughout the day. These waters are like DAOC respec stones. You use them in order to reset your skill points, stat points, talent points, etc. Up until this point it’s been nigh impossible to reset your stats. Being a tester this has meant either picking a spec and sticking with it or creating new chars. Since my goal was to reach the level cap in each beta phase, restarting constantly when I made a mistake was out of the question.
With stacks of waters I have been able to test many new specs for the Warden class. There are three general ways to spec this class: Caster, Melee, and Pet. Additionally, each of these playstyles has within it a few different ways to specialize. You can straight up make your pet powerful while taking defensive talents to survive while it wrecks people or you can make your pet powerful and make yourself a glass cannon on top of it. You can take utility abilities or focus on purely offense/defense. Casting has several specs as well. Do you want to go straight nukes or place a totem down and send out whirlwinds to bring people to it? Melee spec is one of the more straight forward specs, but on top of being melee you can choose several different styles in the pet tree. There are 38 Rubies (or talent points) to invest in the talent grids and 45 points to put into the talent tree. That’s a lot of points and a lot of customization.
Discovering this immense diversity in specs for my own class had me curious as to how others were fairing. Turns out it’s fairly widespread that each class has many ways in which to spend points. Paladins being spell based for damage or melee and 2h or 1h/shield, Warriors going tank spec or dps, Psionicists going stuns or damage, etc. etc. While it may be a bit too far to say that “no two people will be the same”, it’s going to be a lot more diverse than talent point spending in WoW or LotRO. This makes both PvP and PvE very interesting. I went up against four different Wardens yesterday and each of them fought me differently. I had to adapt once I figured out how they were going to fight me. Usually I lost if I interpreted their spec wrong, but when I would come across them again I remembered their name and remembered “okay, this guy casts but if I drop all my cooldowns on him I can kill him quick” or “this guy has a ton of survivability and relies on outlasting me, so I kite him”. You don’t see that too often in a Themepark-like game. It’s actually closer to DAOC than WoW when it comes to PvP (just without the stealth classes perfing you).
As for myself, I tried two different builds yesterday (that actually worked for me — I tried several others). I’m currently playing with a build that makes me a glass cannon nuker with utility and a pet that knocks down. I have a spell that swarms the enemy with bees, causing them to run around confused for 12 seconds. While dazed I am able to damage them and it won’t break the daze. It’s on a cooldown but a great ability to use on someone and gain the upper hand. Switching to this caster build meant dropping the claws in favor of a staff to accomodate my talents that say “when using a staff”. After switching up my gear a bit in favor of perception now instead of a balance, I’m able to see big numbers and burst damage. I also tried a pet spec that I’m working on adapting into a PvE/PvP leveling spec. It focuses heavily on making my pet unstoppable and turning me into a target people would rather ignore because I’m hard to kill. It factors in evasion, health stones, armor talents, and a few other surprises. And yes, I’m now doing much better in PvP.
Overall, the field in PvP is diverse. The Russian version was apparently patched and Scouts received a damage nerf. In all honesty I can’t really speak to whether or not it was called for in the end game, but at level 30 they are able to deal out immense damage consistently vs. others doing it in bursts. Death was certain to follow a Scout getting the jump on you. Whether or not this will reach the NA version, I do not know. Other than a few moments of emo rage when I’m killed in the blink of an eye or can’t chip any HP off the mega tank spec warrior, the game’s PvP balance is acceptable enough that I like to PvP and find myself successful.
If you guys have any questions about the PvP, PvE, or any questions about Allods go ahead and ask.