I happened to get into DCUO’s beta the day the NDA was lifted, so might as well share a couple really, really brief impressions from the character creation and tutorial.
- The setup is different than CoH and Champions, for good and bad
- I liked having an “inspirational” iconic villain/hero that you’re modeled after, although the choices I was given were a paltry three or four
- I’ll give this much to DCUO: It’s the first major superhero MMO that’s going to launch with both villain and hero factions
- I made a crazy paramilitary clown girl who specialized in gadgets and idolized the Joker
- There aren’t as many options for looks or powersets as CoH/Champions, at least not from the outset
- I really didn’t like the character creator’s UI — it was unnecessarily split up and I had difficulty making my character look the way I wanted
- This is definitely more of an action-MMO than Champions or CoH. Everything moves a lot faster, which has its good points and bad. Combat is fast and furious and flows smoothly, but it really does just feel like button mashing. The screen would get really cluttered visually, and quite often I’d lose orientation and track of my character in relation to my enemies.
- I chose acrobatic (I think?) traveling powers, and it was probably the most fun aspect of the character. I ran in fast, loping steps, I could climb walls and cling to ceilings, and I had a double-jump.
- Visually, everything looks top-notch except for character faces.
- I got a power early on (sticky bomb) and it was pretty fun — and easy — to use.
- Did not really like double pistols — after a while I’d just close range and lay a beatdown with punches.
- Combat involves combos and whatnot (think Batman: Arkham Asylum)
- Decent voice-overs
- There’s a nice cinematic feeling to the start, including the cutscenes
- Nice touch: One button to loot any goodies in the vicinity (sucks them right into you)
- Just by doing the tutorial, I came away slightly impressed. It felt more polished than I’d anticipated, and visually it was a treat.
- While movement was fun, it didn’t always function great in combat, and I often wanted to strafe faster or turn more quickly than I could. I’ve heard it’s better to control with a gamepad, but hell will freeze over before I start using one of those on a computer.
- Despite what a couple readers may think, I’m not against action MMOs — I just think that they aren’t the next big thing. They’re a subgenre of MMOs, and that’s fine. DCUO is a console MMO at heart, and despite my initial misgivings, I think it warrants further investigation. SOE could be on to something.