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drunkenpandaren ([personal profile] drunkenpandaren) wrote2012-04-06 12:15 pm
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Mists of Pandaren Beta - Day 1 and 2 First Impressions


Okay now that's out of my system, lets break it down. I've done part of Jade Forest and the Pandaren Starting Zone. While it is unfinished by spades and things aren't done, and cinematics aren't put into the game yet, it is an interesting experience to say the least.

Monk is by far the most refreshing design of gameplay I have ever experienced in a long while. There's enough power, flexibility and design to keep it fresh, and some of these abilities range from amazing to downright hilarious. The strong AOE style of gameplay, coupled with the melee-types of chi generation is downright incredible, and the animation really lends to it. Even though some of the models aren't done YET, it is already proving to be a nice fluid experience.

Pandas come in three flavors: Brewmaster, Mistweaver and Windseeker which are your Tank, Heal and DPS specs. Or as I like to call them, Jackie Chan, Iroh and Bruce Lee. Clearly the Iroh Spec is fundamental but it's also quite an interesting gameplay. You don't use offhands or shields for healing, you use weapons which are systematic to the Chi generation abilities of Jab/Slice/Clobber/Whatever. Energy generation is top tier and it is a fun experience all around.

Lorewise, this is nice because you get the feeling Pandas are here to bring balance, and not side wholy with one or the other. The uncertainty of Ayla when Varian stresses no-cross-faction friendships is definitely heard in her "voice" as it were.

The environemnt is top tier. So much that I have to turn my graphics DOWN in order to maintain a steady FPS and even then I am LAGGING. But this IS beta after all and there isn't much to it. I have a beast of a machine and Beta lags? Clearly this is graphic intensive.

Monk really brings a refreshing view to the game, and gives us a nice feel for it. It's strong, powerful, rogue-like with huge burst values. Put them into heirloom and they're unstoppable. But that's not what I'm here for at least.

First impressions are developing as they go around, but nothing beats rolling through zones to the Mulan Soundtrack.