Ever met a stunningly beautiful man / woman that is empty headed? This is my impression of Black Desert Online. Its great to look at but the long term interaction is unappealing. Other than the enjoyment of the visually stunning display before you there is nothing that pulls me into the game. It was quite a chore to play as it is just a matter of go to this place and kill x mobs while fighting for mobs that other players are killing. The systems are complex and I work hard in real life, I don’t want to work hard at a game, I want to play it and enjoy it. That’s just me.
I’ve played the Black Desert Online Closed Beta on three separate days to give my own opinion of the game after watching videos and hearing what others thought. Here are my thoughts about this game that you may or may not agree with. This is only my opinion and there will regardless be people who disagree with it, especially friends of mine who play it already in other areas where it has already launched.
Black Desert Online Closed Beta opinion
First off I give Black Desert Online a score of 3 out of 10 for a casual gamer. For a hard core gamer I give it a score of 8 out of 10. If you are going to work / got to school and then only play this game AND if you enjoy complicated games then this is the one for you. I cannot get into this game due to the fact that I stream many different games and there are parts of this game that I dislike, as well as the fact that I have a life outside of video games with work and family.
Character Customization epic 7 out of 5 stars
Learning Curve – 1 out of 5 stars
Skills – 4 out of 5 stars
Organisation 1 out of 5 stars
Appearance 5 out of 5 stars
Player content 4 out of 5 stars
Leveling 2 out of 5 stars
End game 1 out of 5 stars
Story 1 out of 5 stars
Set aside for the moment that the game is in Closed Beta and the voice overs for the cut scenes do not work (that’s right none of them, music plays but you have to read the subtitles), this game drops you into the middle of nowhere and gives you a short tutorial on how to move and run. That’s about it. There are a few pointers as you progress that show you how to get a mount and how to get storage in a town but you are forced to weed through hours of you tube videos made by current players to get a basic understanding of the intricate systems within the game.
The best part of the game is the character customization. There are literally hundreds of minute details to tweak and set making your character your own. You will spend no less than 20 minutes creating your character, and for the truly determined, you can spend hours! You will see that I chose to not change many of the features available to me and it took 15 mins to do. you can even see how your character appears throughout the game in different weather environments and the only confusing part was the constellation choice. Is it important?
As far as I understand there’s skills, gathering, crafting, trading , buying, selling, auctions, nodes, player storage & housing, mounts, inventory, energy, conversation, guilds and questing systems. That’s all within the first couple hours of gameplay. None are very clearly defined and you are left with more questions than answers while you play.
The game is massive and quite complicated and throws a lot at you early on. This has a snowball effect as you have to absorb all of the complexities in quite a short period of time. There is no explanation other than some text why you can have a conversation with some NPC’s and not others and I found myself travelling to different areas trying to follow the quest line without talking to some of the NPC’s I was quite sure I should have spoken to before leaving an area. This method of introduction may be good for players on an alt but is very confusing for newcomers.
NPC’s also have a never ending loop when you’re speaking to them, you have to exit out of the conversation or you can sit there forever pressing ‘r’. Don’y know if this is a closed beta bug or not.
To say that the systems of buying, selling, bartering and marketplace auctions alone within the game is complex is an understatement. After playing this game for a few days you should be able to become a successful stock broker in real life. You have to be able to barter with traders who are different from regular NPC’s to get above market prices for the stuff you have and different towns have different prices and markets from each other for demand based on supply. The marketplace itself has a plethora of information to help you buy and sell when the timings right, however trying to figure out this system will take a long time, even for the dedicated gamer.
Being taught what your skills do is not there. You can spam all of your skills and get through the game just fine. This game does not introduce you to your skills the way others do. The skills are somewhat dumped on you and with everything else being thrown at you it can become overwhelming. Sure you can read the tool tip about what the skills do but actually using them to get maximum benefit will not be there until you have a few weeks put into the game. Again if you watch current players guides on how to use the skills you will have an easier time, but you do not get your own play style that way now do you?
The system of nodes and connecting them are not clear. They are extremely important though. If you are a hardcore gamer and will not play anything else for a few years then you will enjoy about a week’s worth of videos you need to watch to get you prepared to play the game. If you aren’t prepared for that sacrifice then just move on.
From what I’ve seen and heard there is no end game other than PvP content to control territory. It may be territory to kill mobs for crafting ingredients, guild control or farming I don’y know as I will probably never get there.
I could go on and on but it all boils down to the fact that this game is not made for the gamer who just wants to play a video game, this is made for the gamer who wants to live out a life in a video game. There is an emptiness that doesn’t draw me into this game as other games do. I’ve been to 2 major towns and ten different areas and I am still not sure what the story is about in this game. The basic fact is that this game seems poorly implemented. Don’t get me wrong, it is an awesome game if implemented properly but it just seems like a product that is not for the masses.
In its current form it will have a lot of players that will be dedicated to it for years to come, unfortunately I cannot be one of them.