Kyrath On April - 11 - 2014

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Previously known as EverQuest Next Landmark, Landmark is an upcoming game in development by Sony Online Entertainment. It is a game that is all about exploration and building, and has been likened to Minecraft but with better graphics. Landmark went into a Closed Beta stage on March 26th, and I was fortunate enough to get a beta key. I thought that I would share my first impressions of the game with you all.

The first noteworthy part of the game is that the world design is voxel-based. First of all, this means that you can destroy/mine any part of the world; it is completely destructible! (Of course, it will eventually regenerate in order to renew ores and prevent griefing.) The second benefit of voxels is that they allow for a practically infinite array of player creations! Once in the game, you can stake out a claim for yourself, which is an area in which you have complete control over the terrain. Using the materials and tools that you have gathered, what you can build is limited only by your imagination! One of my favorite things to do in Landmark is explore the world and check out other players’ creations; some of their work is astonishing!

That brings me to another thing that I love about Landmark: moving around the world. In almost every RPG, you stare at your character almost 100% of the time. Yet the movement animations are usually mediocre at best. Given that I spend so much time looking at my character moving around the world, I’d really like movement to look impressive. And Landmark delivers on that with their “heroic movement” style, which incorporates parkour elements. For example, whenever you encounter a small obstacle in your path, you automatically vault over it without having to press the jump button. You also realistically slide down cliffs and hills rather than just display a running animation while slipping down them. There is also a wide range of sprinting, jumping, rolling, diving, and flipping involved. Not to mention the grappling hook! Because of this, I find it quite fun just to run through the world! This is probably one of my favorite parts of Landmark! I’m really looking forward to having this movement system implemented in EverQuest Next, as well as the destructibility of the world.

Given that the game is still in beta, there are obviously some flaws with it. I think that the most common complaint with the game is that it is quite a grind. You follow a strict pattern of harvesting tier X materials to make tier X harvesting tools in order to harvest tier Y materials, and so on. This progression, coupled with the fact that it takes a large amount of resources to build anything on your claim, means that you spend a lot of time harvesting resources. I do wish that I could spend a little more time building, although harvesting resources can be rather enjoyable, especially in a group. That’s another great thing about the game: grouping! While in a group, as long as you are near to your group members, you all get a bonus to harvesting and you share in everyone else’s harvested materials! As far as I can tell, the materials aren’t split between the groups members, they are duplicated. For example, if you were alone and cut down a tree and received 2 heartwood, if you were in a group everyone would receive 2 heartwood from the tree. This is a really beneficial grouping system, although I’m not sure if it’s going to remain this good upon launch.

Overall, I think that Landmark is going to be a great game. Plus it’s going to be Free-to-play. Once they add water, lava, caves, enemies, and combat I’m sure that it will get even more interesting and fun!

Categories: News, Reviews

One Response

  1. Alexrneb says:

    Can’t wait to get into this game! Thanks for the post!

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