I said I’d write about this yesterday. I lied and instead wrote about my current concerns with mainstream game reviews. But I’m not sure how much longer I can keep at this game, so I ought to start writing about it before I lose motivation entirely.
Getting started in Forsaken World is easy enough. Download and install the game, create an account, pick a server, and make a character. No surprises and no hitches with the download and install. Creating an account with Perfect World Entertainment was no more difficult than it ever is. I chose the US East Coast PvE server — I’m not adverse to PvP games, but my instincts told me FW is not designed for Open World PvP. I think my instincts were right, but I’ll come back to that another time.
Character creation was a pleasant enough experience. There are games with more customization available, and there are games with less. I was satisfied with the amount of freedom and did not feel confined to a limited number of character models. I was not, however, all that impressed with the character art. The game company is Korean, so perhaps the character art is intended to please a Korean audience. With the exception of the Stoneman and Dwarf races, it’s nearly impossible to tell, at a glance, whether an avatar is male or female. Elven, Human, and Forsaken male characters have very slight, feminine builds. I’m comfortable enough in my sexuality to play male or female toons and base my choice on some imagined character concept rather than on my personal identity, but I’d prefer my male toons to look male and female to look female. Well, except in Fable 2 which I played as a psychotic, cross-dressing bisexual — but that was an intentional (and quite humorous if I may so myself) choice and not forced ambiguity.
As I mentioned, the Dwarves and Stonemen are the exceptions to this trend. Dwarves look as they are depicted in most fantasy worlds: short, stout, bearded dudes. Stonemen look like big dudes made out of stone — there is not actually an option to make a Stonewoman. On the other hand, dwarven female characters are as disturbing as beauty pageants for toddlers. If I had children, especially a daughter, I don’t think I’d want her going full Lolita in a virtual theme park.
Character art aside, the other art in the game is beautiful. I was surprised with how well done the architecture and other background art appeared — I suppose I just didn’t expect much from a f2p game. I probably wouldn’t call it the greatest art to ever grace an MMO, but it was certainly well-done.
Tomorrow: Forsaken World Gameplay