ArcheAge Comprehensive Launch Review: The Golden Sandpark


Other Gameplay
Already over a thousand words in and I’m just now getting started on Gameplay. It’s been a while since I’ve played a game that required this much detail in the review. And that’s one of the things that’s refreshing about ArcheAge. It’s simple yet complex, which makes it interesting and fun. Everything you could want from an MMORPG. Something that a lot of developers seem to fail at completely, unfortunately.

ArcheAge Review Fishing

A lot of people get confused when they try to place ArcheAge into a genre. Some call it a sandbox and plenty of people are quick to point out that it isn’t. And those people are right, to a point. The term I’ve found the most exactly describes ArcheAge is Sandpark – that is sandbox and themepark mashed together. It’s got the typical features of a themepark MMORPG such as quests, dungeons, world bosses, and click-based combat. But it also has sandbox features like housing with lots of customization, territory control for guilds, sailing, trade packs, and a player-run economy. It is, in my opinion, nearly the perfect balance of sandbox and themepark elements.

ArcheAge Review Quest

Speaking of questing, it’s probably my least favorite thing in the game. The primary way to level up and get low-end gear in ArcheAge is through questing. And these are your typical “run here” and “kill X of Y” type quests. Nothing special and highly repetitive to the point that you might even accidentally burn yourself out on the game. However, questing isn’t the only way to level in this game.

ArcheAge Review Mining

You get EXP from just about everything in the game. Heck, during the beta I would let my Labor Points (something I’ll get into soon) recharge up to 5,000, chug a vocation potion, and then head over to the massive mine in Solis Headlands and get a few levels while getting a nice chunk of iron ore and stone for my guildies to use. I also typically get enough exp while crafting to go up at least one level during each session. It may not be the most efficient or quickest ways to level, but it’s certainly possible to do so for those that don’t want to make combat their main focus of the game. Not that I’m saying you should do that – combat is very much a core component of the game and it’s something you shouldn’t avoid. But it is possible.

ArcheAge Review Crafting

Speaking of crafting, there is a lot of it. From cooking, to tailoring, to masonry. There’s a skill for just about everything you could want in a fantasy setting. And they’re all pretty interlocked. You won’t be able to efficiently get everything you need for your primary craft by yourself unless you spend a lot of labor points and time preparing. This dependence between the crafting professions means you’ll want to work with others or, at the very least, take part in some trading via the auction house.

ArcheAge Review Archeum

There is an item in the game that is required for crafting all gear. Accessories, armor, and weapons. At first, the Archeum requirements for this gear isn’t too bad – especially since Trion has listened to the cries of the players and introduced better Archeum drops. But, even with those changes, it seems impossible to get the thousands upon thousands of Archeum you’ll need for some of the better crafted gear. The reason for this is mostly the RNGesus, as a lot of the later gear is basically a dice roll to see if you get the exact right kind that will unlock the ability for you to create the next set. It gets frustrating, to say the least.

 

ArcheAge Review  Armor Craft

It sucks knowing that high-end crafted gear is a pipe dream for a lot of people.

 

There’s also an interesting Trial System in the game, where players can volunteer (by completing a short quest line) to be a Jury candidate. Once someone has gotten enough crime points and then die from PVP, they are sent to court where they’ll sit in front of a Jury of their peers (who have access to a list of all reported crimes) and plead their case. As you might imagine, this can be quite hilarious at times. Unfortunately, though, as you’ll see in the community section of the review, anyone and everyone can hop onto the trial chat channel and throw in their two cents. This has kind of turned Trial chat into a general chat channel. Another downfall of the system is that it’s very easy to rig it so that your friends are in the Jury when you go to court – either by careful timing or by just having a large amount of players in your guild/alliance.

ArcheAge Review Court

 

 

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  • TheWisendorf .

    First off Archeage is presented to us as a F2P game.If all you want to do is some quests and pvp at the end ,ok.But the whole game is based off Labor points and owning land..As it is now they want you to be a patron.$50,100,and 150 bucks .You can not even buy from the store most of the parts you might want .Even a monthly subscription would be better..So unless you are a patron you can not compete in this game as F2P.I am still hanging in to see if they make some changes before I discard the game for good.Yes it is beautiful game and the hype is tremendous.But after that wears off.People want to be treated fairly or they will leave the game.You like to craft? Fine.But you can only craft so far then you need special tools,And a house to set up in. I play F2P Rift and we are treated better because you can still do anything you want in the game with an occational store purchase.There is a big push by Archeage to get you to buy into the patron thing.Some of us have families to feed and we don’t throw this kinda money at a game.If I have mislead you on anything,please set me strait.

    • ApocaRUFF

      I agree with you, a lot of the game is cut off from you – or you’re at least severely hindred from particiapting in it – if you’re not a patron. Crafting and farming because of LP, and also because of land ownership. I feel I express this well enough in the review, but I have to admit that I’m not one of the people who feel the plight of a F2P very well, as I’m a patron and have no issue paying $15 a month to play a game – I spend more than that for lunch/dinner sometimes.

      But, one thing that should be kept in mind, is that APEX is a thing. If you can buy two APEX, you will have $20 worth of crystals in the cashop. You can then use those crystals to buy patron, and still have $5 worth of crystals left over. Right now, the APEX are going for 30-45G each. Here’s a screenshot to support this, http://prntscr.com/4nkg1j

      80G is no problem to get, even as a F2P. You get that much simply from questing from 1 to 50, and then-some. You’ll get even more if you sell whatever Archeum dust you get from dis-enchanting equipment, or what little farming you’ll do.

      Once you get that patron, you can then purchase a farm. And there is still land – my guild just moved to A PVP zone now that we have some higher levels and had no problem finding land in the PVP zone… playing Tahyang server. So that means there’s still land in PVP zones. And if you feel that you simply cannot survive in a PVP zone, there’s land in safe zones going up for sale or simply just becoming open as people move around – there will be a large exodus away from the continents once the Northern continent is open and people move there to have easy access/teleports to the important resources that continent offers.

      Anyways, with that land, it’s not issue at all to farm up 10-20G worth of stuff a day, if you play the market well enough.5-15g if you’re extremely lazy about it. Then you can supplement what you grow with mining and rock is a very hot item right now as everyone is trying to build their homes. Same for wood.

      So, to put it simply, it’s no issue to farm up on APEX as a F2P right now. The only major issue you will run into is the fact that the servers are full and F2Ps have massive queues at the moment.

      TL;DR – I agree that the game is kind of unfair when it comes to F2Ps, but it is possible for a F2P to be on par – even gain patron status – with a paying player.