Ashes of Creation drops verbal NDA, triggering deluge of public tester feedback

    
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bears, bears, beaaaaaars

Ashes of Creation may have delayed its Alpha One test until later this summer, but the upcoming MMO isn’t surrendering its voice until then. In fact, Intrepid Studios lifted the verbal NDA for the May alpha test, allowing players to talk about — but not show — their experiences in the game.

Probably the biggest criticism emerging from this discussion is over the game’s combat system, which some testers called “a little clunky” and “not fun nor engaging.”

“I thought combat was fine,” one tester said. “It’s definitely not as satisfying/fun as New World, but that’s an unfair comparison for a few reasons. I would definitely say ‘It’s not quite there yet,’ but can see it becoming solid.”

On the flip side, testers were pretty excited over how the evolving node system worked and had good things to say about the immersive and wide-open world as well as the dedication of the development team. “Things seem as expected for any game this early in development,” another poster said. “Lots of basic stuff that works, lots of things that don’t work but definitely proof that this game seems to be coming along.”

Several testers noted that the game does seem a while out from release, with one saying, “My personal guess is that the game won’t be ready until 2023/2024, but the game is slowly but surely coming along with a lot of the core features coming online.”

Source: Twitter, Reddit
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Solaris_N7

I’ve been in AoC testing since the first backers were invited.. I don’t need to recap all that’s been covered. I will say this Dev team is amazing. They listen to and incorporate feedback. There is constant communication. I’ve tested multiple games since UO, before you basically paid to be in test and I’ve not seen an MMO of this scope progress so quickly. Every build represents a leap in content. Absolutely love what they have done already and we’re still relatively early in development. People doubted Sharif but he’s been a great leader and has surrounded himself with top tier talent. As a backer who’s been burned pretty good on similar projects, I couldn’t be happier with Ashes progress and the team behind it. This is the game I’ve been waiting for since the glory days of DAoC.

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Rndomuser

Since I can’t edit previous post, this is the official information about combat. It will be revamped and the test weekend did not include any of the revamped combat yet, maybe by the time the game is available for streaming it will have the new changes:

https://ashesofcreation.wiki/Combat_revamp

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Godnaz

Prone and crouch will likely not be in the game. yikes kinda

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Rndomuser

For a game that was in pre-alpha I thought it felt ok. Yes, there were many bugs, many features were missing and combat wasn’t really unique but that’s all that will be reworked according to things I’ve read on official Discord. Personally I enjoyed the testing experience and could see an actual game forming up, and the progress was much farther than some other games which have been in development for 8 years and which are considered as Beta by their developers. And I especially enjoyed the active participation of several Intrepid Studio employees during the test both in the game and in Discord, including Steven himself. Haven’t seen this level of participation from any Amazon employees during New World testing.

Anyway, people will see the stuff themselves once the NDA for streaming will drop, you don’t have to spend any money yourself to do this or trust anyone’s subjective opinions.

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laelgon

I thought it was pretty ok.

Combat was your standard tab targeting, with the option to switch to an action mode that mostly just changed the camera angle and changed the attack button from Q to left-click. There was no auto-attack, so you had to be mashing the Q key whenever you weren’t doing abilities. What was different from most games is that your level doesn’t affect your ability to hit enemies or not. At level 5 I was fighting level 15 mobs and beating them handily with just paying a bit of attention to heals.

Quests were a spread of the standard: Kill X things, Go to location and interact with item or NPC, with a few very basic puzzle ones.

The make or break feature is ultimately going to be the node system and how that ties into PvP, which wasn’t really fleshed out at all. Nodes are meant to be a long point of progression and tie you to an area, but since it was just a weekend with a few play windows and everything was sped up, it’s hard to judge it. One cool thing was that when a node developed, bridges were added over the rivers. Getting people invested in the nodes is going to be critical, which means striking a very careful balance between building them up and how easy it is to knock them down. Also just the issue of people starting late and finding everything built and bought.

I think the game has the potential to carve out a solid niche for itself, but anyone expecting it to revolutionize the genre will end up disappointed.

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Sleepy

Can we call it Ashoc? I’m old and AoC will always be Age of Conan.

Also, get off my lawn.

Alomar
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Alomar

Crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and hear the lamentation of their women!

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Dug From The Earth

a game releasing in the same market as other games, most likely for the same price points, with the same monetization values… ABSOLUTELY can be fairly compared to other games.

Thats what competition is. If you cant make something that can compare, you have failed to adequately compete.

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Meanie

I think maybe they just mean that it’s a game being developed by Amazon, a company with vast resources. Plus New World is nearly at release, this game is far out from that point

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Dug From The Earth

Plus New World is nearly at release, this game is far out from that point

lets roll with that concept though in respect to what I said about being able to compete….

Ashes has been in development for 5 years. New World only 3.

Some might say that New World isnt ready for release… but the fact is, its being released. Games that take too long in development often fail simply because they cant even get their product out.

Developing your game in a competitive time period IS part of being able to compete with the other games on the market

While Ashes doesnt have Amazon money… the guy behind it is pretty freaking rich, and the crowd funding for the game still earned a good amount of money (over 3 million). Just as a comparison… Dark Age of Camelot, a much older successful mmorpg, cost around 2.5 million to develop, by a 25 man team, in under two years. They designed their own engine from scratch. Ashes has the Unreal Engine.

Thats the problem with a lot of these newer games lately. They just cant compete. Longer development periods, higher development costs, and they still cant deliver what companies have managed to do in less time, with less money, in the past.

By no means does that mean Ashes will be a failure, or suck. It just means that the idea of trying to move the game into a safer “its not fair to compare it to other games” corner, isnt at all legit.

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Dystopiq

New World was announced in 2016 so it was definitely in development before then. I don’t know where the heck you pulled this 3 year figure from. Amazon has VAST resources. Intrepid does not. Also Steven Sharif isn’t freaking rich. He’s a multimillionaire at best.

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Dug From The Earth

yeah, i googled it and the first result for me said in big bold text “3 years”

They did announce it in 2016, but it seems there is some controversy over if any real work was being done. They (amazon) apparently moved devs from another game in 2018 to go work on New World and Crucible, which might be where google was getting this 3 year figure from.

Even still… that puts New World on par with the dev time of Ashes… only New World is releasing… and Ashes…. well.. isnt. New World could massively fail. Just because amazon has money, doesnt mean its going to their game development… as has been seen by their other flops of games.

Ashes made over 3 million in kickstarter, but is said to have around a 30 million budget.

And saying “multimillionaire” isnt rich, is just absurd.

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Kulan Sinclair

I’d rather a game that takes a bit longer to release and is actually good. Not that we know yet if either of them will actually be good… Though the recent new world news got me to get a refund.

Really I hope they’re both good.

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Dug From The Earth

Id rather a game take as long as necessary to be good as well.

More often the case with these no name companies, however, is that they take long, because they dont really know what they are doing.

Give a skilled team and an unskilled team the same resources, and the skilled team will most likely finish sooner.

Taking longer doesnt mean that the unskilled team will eventually finish with as good of quality of a product either.

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Leiloni

Worth pointing out that Amazon Games is a subsidiary of Amazon – a separate company that has to make it’s own money. They’re not guaranteed to have the tons of money Amazon proper has. I’m sure they’ve been given a healthy budget, but they don’t have the endless pockets of Amazon.com, Inc. I think part of why New World has developed so fast is because they have a limited scope. While I’m excited for Ashes, they did try to take on quite a lot of stuff, perhaps too much for a release.

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Andrew

Great response. All these folks say Amazon has VAST resources… Yes they do. To spend on Games? No they don’t. Amazon is wealthy but it makes little sense to drown a product in so much cash that it will never become profitable. That’s not how Amazon became what it is today.

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Alberto

Exactly what I was thinking ..both Games are Directly comparable. He made a Bad choice in that Comparison should have used like Black Desert or GW2.

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T h e n o n y m o u s

I believe the context for that statement was more in line with the fact that New World is already developed, being close to actual launch and is very action combat whereas AoC is still very, VERY early in Alpha and isn’t exclusively action combat.

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Connor

“I thought combat was fine,” one tester said. “It’s definitely not as satisfying/fun as New World, but that’s an unfair comparison for a few reasons. I would definitely say ‘It’s not quite there yet,’ but can see it becoming solid.”

Looking at feedback like this, Shariff’s anger at New World makes sense. It’s ego.

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2Ton Gamer

New World has a lot more to prove than AoC does. Besides the fact that New World is further along than AoC so yeah their combat SHOULD be more evolved you also have to consider that one is from a GIANT tech company and the other is made from crowd-funding and other investments so one should definitely be the better game, yet I would not be surprised to see AoC as the better game when it is ready to go live IF New World is even still around. Amazon’s track record is pretty terrible at this point and besides it being pretty and polished, I have not been overly impressed by it as a long-term MMO. After the streamers are done with New World, will Amazon stick with it? Guess we’ll see. If it comes down to Bezo’s yacht getting a mahogany toilet seat with pearl handles or this game getting more content and updates I’m going with Bezo’s toilet seat every time….

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T h e n o n y m o u s

Money doesn’t automatically equal ability or competence, something Amazon has proven repeatedly with their games so far lol. That being said, I also think it’s disingenuous to say that Amazon has more to prove than a studio that also hasn’t really developed anything so far and has far less money to allow them to weather a bad game, especially when that single game is still YEARS away from launch, and already seems to be aggressively monetized despite barely being in Alpha.

New World just has to be decent, AoC has to prove it’s not just fantasy Star Citizen. Personally I find the latter to be a bigger ask than the former at this point lol.

Also, you know that Amazon employs over 1M people and Jeff Bezos isn’t micromanaging every single thing at the company, right? He isn’t involved with Amazon Games in any direct capacity at all lol.

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Vanquesse V

Looking at New World alone then, no Amazon has much less to prove.
The problem is that they pushed into gaming in a very big and very public way, and so far every single product has been a disaster and they’ve become the laughing stock of everyone paying attention to gaming.
New World has more to prove for the same reason that Tomb Raider was a failure despite selling 3.4 mil units.

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T h e n o n y m o u s

Again, this completely ignores the fact that Intrepid has been talking a lot of talk for years at this point…and are still years away from their single product that will literally make or break them as a whole.

Maybe you feel that they have more to prove, but from a entirely practical and simple “walking the walk” standpoint Amazon literally just has to make New World not a failure in order to succeed, whereas Intrepid has to pretty much has to manage to actually make this nostalgia laden frankenstein they keep promising, which again…since it’s literally the foundation of their entire company means they have much more to prove at this point.

Also, who the hell thinks Tomb Raider was a failure? The reboot has sold well over 10M copies to date and was a critical and financial success…which itself has spawned several sequels, a movie, an announced netflix show, AND an almost guaranteed fourth entry to be announced next month at E3 lol.

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Vanquesse V

Tomb Raider was mentioned in a financial report as being considered a failure at a point where it had sold 3.4mil, which was way more than anyone could reasonably hope for at that time for anything that wasn’t call of duty, elder scrolls or call of duty.
But for Square Enix that wasn’t enough, because they felt TR should be able to “pay for” the recent failures from other studios, and SE had just had a series of high profile expensive AAA stinkers.

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T h e n o n y m o u s

This is either a gross misunderstanding or a gross misrepresentation of what happened lol.

“It failed to meet sales targets” isn’t remotely the same thing as “it failed”. It was their best launch ever, it was their best selling game for that year, it turned a profit in weeks, and it was very well received critically. With the sole exception of their internal targets, it literally succeeded by every single quantifiable metric. Even if Square Enix truly just somehow felt it was a failure…then it wouldn’t have warranted a sequel, let alone one with a larger budget.

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Jeremy Barnes

if AoC was fantasy Star Citizen than it would be worlds above expectation. The bar for AoC is just releasing something remotely resembling the game they promised which they have been struggling to do.

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T h e n o n y m o u s

I mean, it’s not quite the same as Star Citizen in the sense that there hasn’t been like this insane amount of scope creep or anything, but the underlying issue, which is what you mentioned, is the same: delivering on what’s been promised.

At this point, I have little faith in either in their ability to do so, and in that respect that’s why it’s starting to feel like fantasy Star Citizen to me lol.

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Strixxx

He has always been against P2W in MMOs… It’s his freaking opinion..Why Do you think he is angry at New World/Amazon lol? He was literally helping them by telling them how stupid it is to talk about p2w stuff before the game is even released.

Do you want him to be Bobby Kotick? Just in general I don’t understand why you people want to take the benefits of these studios like be accessible, and not allow them to have an opinion..

It wasn’t even aggressive, grow up man.

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Connor

His company is selling a $500 pre-order package, he’s already trying to be Bobby Kotick. Actually that’s not true, Kotick never sold a $500 alpha access pack for any of their games.

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Strixxx

The money is obviously going into the project.. It’s more ambitious than the AAA New World and ofc it will cost a lot of money.. If people are willing to support the game with 500$ let them, it’s not like he is taking the money and adding p2w items in a shop.

If I had the money I would support them with these kind of money just to get a decent MMO developed by someone who is against P2W and payed “QOL”..

Now go back you whatever p2w game you came from :)

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Godnaz

It doesn’t make Kotick any less of a piece of shit human being.

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Jeremy Barnes

always? Are you sure about that?

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Bruno Brito

Uh…Sharif was one of the biggest P2Winners in Archeage.

Man, i don’t get it. Is this desperation or something? Are MMO players so damn desolate that even a PR apology that was considered and deliberate to bring artificial attention to his 500 bucks alpha test something to be happy about?

Jesus. I’m sorry dude, i don’t want breadcrumbs.

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Strixxx

Relevance? He have clearly stated how ridiculous Archage was with it’s p2w system… Also, just because you pw2 in a game doesn’t mean you like to do it, he doesn’t want that system for his own game lol.

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Mallus

I thought New Worlds combat was meh, so if AOC combat is not as satisfying/fun as New World then it’s got allot of work to do…