Allods Online is now in the second phase of closed beta testing. One of the biggest changes I’ve noticed is that they tweaked how long it takes to bring down a mob and how quickly you gain experience. I’ve also noticed that I’m accumulating a lot more ‘fatigue’ when out and about and it’s quite nice to convert that over into full xp via the rest goblin.

I’m really happy with the fact that leveling seems to go at a quicker pace than it did during the first beta. When games are nothing but the leveling game, making it a grind is fine. For certain cultures that expect grinds, I can see how lowering kill xp and quest xp to lengthen the time it takes to get from a to b makes perfect sense.

Allods Online however is a different ballgame. Here I’m assuming you’re building your character to max level to hop aboard a ship and sail out into the wild blue Astral. Here is an end game that is an explorer’s sweetest dream! Get ship, find new places, pick up cool stuff, and probably destroy anyone who’s getting in the way.

Only problem is that to get to the good stuff, you’ve gotta level up. Gah, again with the levels. You know I’d get it if I were skilling up to sail the ships (EVE), but really, boosting up characters just in preparation for ship boarded pvp is kind of annoying. Though for ship vs ship pvp reasons it makes perfect sense to level up before running about, otherwise you’re just going to get ganked repeatedly.

As for classes, I love the fact that they have a LOT of variety. It’s just plain nifty to have so much to choose from and it is of course an alt-aholic’s dream.  There are 8 Archetypes including two pet type classes, warriors, scouts and paladins. Downside is that the races are only allowed to choose from specific classes, but really it works well for lore reasons. So far my favorite races are ‘The Arisen’ because well let’s face it undead are always awesome and the littlest race the Gibberlings. Instead of your typical teeny gnome race, the Gibbberlings are fuzzy and come in a set of 3. The best part is that you’re able to name and customize each one of the three and they all work in unison to fight or interact with the outside world.

So far out of all the classes/archetypes, I’ve enjoyed the pet type classes the most. My Gibberling Warden with their pet squirrel Squee is friggin hilarious to fight with.  My Arisen Summoner is also really interesting to play. Whenever I play a casting class the most annoying part is that long casting times take even longer when constantly interrupted by physical damage. Sure casters get around this with talents, freeze spells or whatever, it’s still pretty annoying. The Summoner’s pet is extreamly handy when in combat since the little critter is able to take the physical damage and keep the mob interested in it as opposed to me. That lets me blast away at the mob decreasing the amount of time it takes to kill them because I’m not interrupted on every blow while trying to cast. Really, there’s nothing more frustrating than finally getting all the way to the end of the casting bar and getting interrupted.

I did try out the Paladin and Healer classes during the first beta. The paladin archetype is really tank worthy. It doesn’t do quite as much damage as it takes, but then again, that is the point of the tank no? The healer in the game is also something I should probably revisit. I’m stoked when any game that removes the typical bone china style delicate nature that most games tend to foist onto the healing classes. In Allods Online, the description states that healers will be able to wear plate from level 30 on. I should probably get to leveling a healer now so that I can test that when the next wave of healers rolls around.

Overall I’m really impresses by how well organized the Allods Online beta has been. I’ve seen very few glitches in game that throw me into a petulant rage (such as broken quests or buggy mobs). They’re also rolling out the beta in phases. The first phase only allowed us to level up to 10 and this one to 20. I think this isn’t a bad idea since it forces us beta folks to focus on the content as opposed to just leveling like crazy and not remembering that we’re there to keep an eye on things.

I’m impressed by a lot of things in the game. I really like the details and while there’s a lot about the game that reminds you that you’re playing a game, there’s also a lot of hidden details and elements that are just too cool. Honestly though, you’d have to check it out yourself.

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