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D&D Online: Hands-on Preview @ UGO

(PC: MMORPG) | Posted by Wildefire @ Monday - December 05, 2005 - 19:19 -
| Game Info | Rate this game | Homepage | Screenshots
UGO is featuring a new hands-on preview that discusses such things as the game's level cap (10, but with mini-levels so you get more 'ding' for your dollar) and that it's designed with parties (versus soloers) in mind. Also, those of you at work should be aware that the page features an obnoxious U.S. Army pop-up ad, with sound, that has come up like five times as I've been typing this. Mute your speakers before you follow the link.
At the end of my demonstration, I was allowed to take a pre-rolled 10th level character for a spin. The game was still challenging at such a high level, and it was impressive to see all the higher-level abilities in action. Speaking of 10th level, that is the level cap in Stormreach. It will be much harder to level in Stormreach than in other MMOs. Each level has four tiers, so as you make your way to the next level, you'll be awarded buffs and bonuses along the way so you won't get bored. In D&D, characters earn experience at the end of their quests; it's not something that happens every time you slay a goblin or a displacer beast. The same goes for Stormreach. You'll get experience for solving quests and tasks, not every time you kill a monster. Players will then be rewarded for coming up with clever ways to complete a task, although smashing foes with an axe will always be an option.

One last thing to note is that this game is being developed with party adventuring in mind. Players who love to solo may find it very difficult to succeed, especially at higher levels. Turbine is really trying to capture the D&D pen and paper feel in this game, which encourages party loyalty and the social aspects of role-playing. This is D&D, so when you lose hit points, you had better have a cleric nearby to heal you. Likewise, if you don't have a thief in your party, finding secret doors is going to be tough. The key to successful adventuring will be to have well-rounded party. To help capture the D&D experience, Turbine is including in-game voice chat capabilities - because typing out "HEAL ME!" while a Hook Horror is ripping your guts out is kind of hard to do.
Source: UGO
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