January 30, 2010
A "farewell" from Aion
Well, it would seem that our little Aion blog has come to an inevitable end.
We began with great enthusiasm for the game during the closed beta days, when Middea introduced Fedoldinn to the game and we spent much time online during the test periods playing. Come launch day, we had pre-ordered two copies and were excitedly awaiting the servers to come up. Early leveling seemed promising, even if it was a repeat of what we’d seen before, and we spent a lot of time online engrossing ourselves in the Aion universe.
It seems like no surprise that level 25 and the Abyss sparked even more enthusiasm for the game. During this time our little blog here had taken off quite well in its original WordPress.com hosted incarnation, with many hits per day and several successful articles written that were viewed by many people… many more than we’d initially expected considering we wrote for our own enjoyment and to entertain ourselves, clear our own thoughts, or rant on what was bothering us at the time.
Early in our Aion careers, this was next to nothing. As the game progressed and as time wore on, it seemed we were ranting more than we were enjoying the game. Several attempts were made to improve our overall enjoyment, from merging our original small friendly legion with another to experience more of the PvP aspect of the game, to moving back to our friendly legion to try and rekindle the sense of community that we had experienced before, and finally to moving to a more competitive, high end legion on our server to take fortresses and conquer content. In the end, none of these moves provided what we were looking for.
The grind was rough, but not the end of the world for either of us. The small legion provided a sense of community in many aspects; from people logging on and chatting while accomplishing their goals, to getting to know one another better and also to spending time on Ventrilo chatting casually. The high end guild provided a larger player base, the promise of regularly scheduled PvP nights for fortress raids and a supposedly greater chance at finding those ever elusive groups for conquering content while leveling.
The fact remains that none of this was enough. In the smaller legion we were faced with the constant issue of not having enough players in any level range to successfully run smaller group content, as well as the issue of legion management and recruitment which both take a toll on those responsible for them. The high end guild had many players, but it never seemed to be a friendly enough atmosphere to get people to head back to old content, or jump in and join others looking for groups instead of focusing solely on personal goals in game.
Aion holds a lot of promise as a game, and it has many positive aspects about it that most people overlook. There are many areas in which to group up and conquer content if that is your goal, there are also many opportunities to play alone. The game has a nice mix of PvP and PvE which should satisfy many. The grind is rough, not much is handed away for free, and it takes general effort to reach the level cap. However, without even the remote ability to find groups and play with other people, it hasn’t been what either of us is looking for in an MMO. The LFG channel is almost devoid of action, generally you see a few groups for areas that you are either too high or too low to play in. The experience penalties severely decimate the number of players willing to go back and help out, or those willing to accept help from people who are more than a couple levels above them.
Unfortunately, I’ve turned this into a semi-rant about what I found wrong with the game. A less severe experience penalty may help these issues, but its far from a solution considering there just doesn’t seem to be anyone willing to play the game for the sake of having fun and joining others in their conquests. To that end, our accounts have expired and neither of us has logged on much in the past month. Maybe that will change in the future if subsequent patches improve the game content or we decide to give it another try, but I know for me that chance is slim to none.
To those still playing, take care and enjoy the game. To anyone who’s read this blog or follows our writing on Aion, take care and farewell. Best of luck to you in the future.
– Fedoldinn and Middea