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Asheron's Call

Score: 90%
ESRB: Teen
Publisher: Microsoft
Developer: Turbine Games
Media: CD/0
Players: 1
Genre: Miscellaneous

Graphics & Sound:

Have you ever sat on the beach and watched a sun rise - how about standing on top of a mountain while the sun sets? When's the last time you ran through the rain, chased by a nine-foot monster? Asheron's Call! The environment graphics are extraordinary. From dusk till dawn; rain, overcast, sun shiny day; beaches, deserts, mountains, plains; its just beautiful. The team at Turbine and Microsoft spent their time developing a beautiful, realistic looking and sounding gaming world. Asheron has called, and it is good. It would be an understatement to say that the environmental graphics were impressive. They're much better than that. I admit, the monsters and player characters could have been done better, but everything looks real (not all cartoony like Everquest). I did, however, notice that with 3DFX, the characters were a bit blocky and cartoony, but with D3D, it looked pretty good to me. I could go on and on about how good the graphics are and how realistic the environments, but you need to experience it for yourself. I noticed a few graphical glitches, but I'm sure that will be worked out before it hits the shelves. The realistic, non-cartoony graphics makes this eye candy you just can't pass up.

Gameplay:

In Ultima Online, you run to where you know the monsters are going to appear, hack then down, gain levels, then go kill a player character. In Everquest, you have to find a group to join in order to safely walk across the street. Asheron calls these games out and lays the smack down on them. Leveling up is not too easy, and if you want, you can go at it all alone; you don't have to group up with people who are going to loot all your kills. The world is huge, the set up is nice, and the system is great. Unfortunately, humans are the only race, but here are three sub races and two genders to choose from. When you initially create your character, you get to choose skills. As you use these skills, they improve. You can also make them better by assigning experience points to them and later skill points (after you level up). What happens when you die? Well, you don't loose any XP, but you do suffer a few penalties to your skills for a while. You do lose a random amount of money and a random item. You are transported back to the last life stone that you attuned your spirit to. Then you run like hell to your body to get your item and money, as well as, take revenge on the monster that killed you. After some time, your body will

Difficulty:

This is a mildly difficult game, but not too hard. You will die, a lot, but that's part of the fun. You can

Game Mechanics:

Solid. Point and click, keyboard command, and graphical interface. Standard issue RPG. The combat system is simple but effective. Aim high, medium, or low. You can sacrifice power for speed and vice versa. Gameplay is smooth and movements are fluid. I am very happy with the mechanics of this title. This is a must try for any online RPG lovers.

-Storm, GameVortex Communications
AKA Jeremy Kelso

Minimum System Requirements:



Windows 95/98, Pentium 166, 32 MB RAM, 150MB HD Space, 4MB SVGA card, 4x CD-ROM, Sound Card, Mouse, Keyboard, DirectX 6, 33.6 Kbps internet connection
 

Test System:



P2 450, Windows 98 SE, 128MB RAM, Diamond Viper V770 Ultra w/32MB RAM, 2 Voodoo 2's SLI, 5x24 DVD-ROM, Monster Sound MX300, 700 Kbps internet connection

Windows Age of Empires II: The Conquerors Expansion Windows Behind Enemy Lines

 
Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated