Vindictus Open Beta Preview
Vindictus by Nexon has been out in Korea and in the US for a while but it recently landed in Europe with its open beta. The game boasts nice looking graphics, realistic physics, a sleek UI interface and pro-active gameplay. By proactive I mean that you can actually dodge arrows or melee blows by either sidestepping, dodging or blocking with your shield, if you have one.
In the preview video below you'll be able to see how Fiona, one of the five characters/classes in Vindictus, handles herself in a dungeon full of gnolls. This is one of the starting quests in the level 1-10 bracket, as this is just a preview and not a full review of the game — it's still a bit early for that.
While you are able to run around town and its stores, do not expect to meet NPCs in the classic sense. Whenever you enter a shop you are presented with a 3D rendering of the interiors, which you cannot explore, and you will only be able to "talk to" 2D avatars of the NPCs. The dialogues are very well written, so while you won't have any breath taking cut scenes or won't be able to interact with 3D versions of the NPCs, you can still collect and turn in quests as you would with any other MMO. Those quests usually send you to dungeons, which are the core of Vindictus.
As I already mentioned every quest is usually tied into a dungeon (or more than one.) These instances become more difficult as you progress, at least that's how it felt in the first few levels of gameplay. You are able to choose between normal, hard and hero mode (the latter only available at level 50) and you can play on your own or with your friends. Some of the bosses at higher levels will require some aid from friends as you can, for example, whip a chain around someone's legs while someone else punishes him with his blades.
The movement and gameplay feels very fluid and responsive. Even though I initially seemed to drop from the server probably because the open beta had just launched and many people were trying to log in at once, I hardly experienced any latency issues after the initial period, making the active fighting style of the game a pleasure and a lot of fun. You can actually tell when a boss is about to melee you and you can defend yourself with a shield or run behind him and hit him and so on.Continued on the next page