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Matrix Online.

Discussion in 'Gaming' started by Jeff_Standley, Feb 21, 2005.

  1. Jeff_Standley

    Jeff_Standley Supporting Actor

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    I havent seen much talk about this game on the forums.
    Is anyone jumping on to try this out when it is released next month. I am definitely going to try it out and see what it's like, let me know and we can all jump on the same server.
     
  2. NickC

    NickC Second Unit

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    in the beta right now, havent played it in a while, havent been impressed with it one bit, not wasting your money is my $.02
     
  3. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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    Jeff,

    I'll repost what I wrote about the game on my website's forums:

    I'm a tad too tired to throw up a full on blow by blow of my play time as I spent a majority of my evening with Guild Wars (which is far exceeding my expectations thus far despite some issues) but the short and skinny of it is that the Matrix Online is not something I'd consider buying nor would I play it if someone gave it to me.

    Monolith definitely tried to put the license to good use but it all comes tumbling down the more you play. The initial impression is good as the character creation follows Link (voiced by Harold Perrineau) through the real world trying to find your incubation pod and rescue you. You have to help him pin down your appearance, attributes and name. Once he locates you, you will arrive at the construct (which is the all white room with the two couches and the TV) where you will be offered the blue pill or the red pill by the captain of the ship that rescued you. I haven't taken the blue pill to see what happens but the red pill will start your character as "awakened". I'd imagine if you take the blue pill you will be in the Matrix unaware of your real life standing. (UPDATE: If you take the blue pill the game gives you an error message saying "Disconnected from the Matrix" and exits you to the desktop. Before you ask, no I'm not joking.)

    After creating your avatar you run through a quick tutorial area that tries to explain the game mechanics to you but the fighting system remains overly complicated at first and to be honest with you, ends up feeling really crappy even when you do get a handle on it. All of the canned animations look terrible and it's just really uninteresting. If you do this type of game based on this specific license the fighting needs to feel as though it's taken right from movie, regardless of whether you are in full real time control or not (which you are not in this game, it's all turn based and decided by random number generation). In reality it's all very generic kung-fu type action and the gun play is even more uninteresting as it continues the type of turn based affair that has a number dictate whether you land your shot regardless of the range. It just doesn't feel right.

    Once you get out of the tutorial area you are greeted by a message from Morpheus (voiced by Laurence Fishbourne) and then you are off to get your groove on in the "matrix" city. First of all, the game performance is less than optimal. I tried several resolutions and detail settings and even at the "highest framerate" option there would be fits of terrible framerate slowdown (not internet lag). Make sure to disable anti-aliasing as for some odd reason this is turned on by default. If you come upon a large group of players, be ready for some serious hiccuping. This could be system dependant of course but I've run Guild Wars, Half Life 2 and Doom 3 at higher resolutions and at more detailed settings with no trouble at all. (I'm running a 3.06gig P4 with an ATI 9800pro and 768mb of ram)

    There are other MMO's on the market who's performance can be less than satisfactory even on high range machines but in those cases (Star Wars Galaxies, Everquest 2 etc.) the engines used are certainly worth it. These games for the most part look stunning. The Matrix Online looks anything but. The screenshots you have seen of the game....don't lie. The words "bland" and "generic" come to mind yet again. There is a decent amount of detail in terms of texture quality but everything just looks identical and lacks any of the grandiosity that makes you want to explore these types of games. Also, character models look pretty good with some nice facial features but thier animation is terribly stiff and rigid (much like the combat).

    There are a bunch of different statistics to play around with on your character including combat skills and "code" specialties. You can eventually acquire the "hyper-jump" ability (I saw one player pull the move off when I got to the rooftop of one building and "whoah" wasn't my response.) as well as several other skills. One of the main goals of the game is to outfit your character with better clothing that you can buy from merchants (along with the aformentioned skills). There is a nice large variety to choose from. Judging by the different vendors I spoke too and the merchandise I sampled, it looks like this is one thing the game got very right. Lots of leather, cool glasses, fancy suits and more!

    You can do a couple of things in the Matrix once you arrive. (As an aside, once you physically enter the world the game starts out with all of the environments, NPC's and player characters in green matrix code. The effect comes off kind of neat but it ends up looking a bit too much like a bunch of static green lines instead of the "moving" code you are used to from the films.) You can take on random thugs that creep along the street to gain experience and what not or you can call your operator to get a new mission. Missions are automatically updated to your map and a waypoint is set which is very easy to follow. Anyone that has played City of Heroes/Star Wars Galaxies etc. will be right at home here. I've played through about four missions and they are your typical meet this person, take this item here, kill 13 of these guys etc. The execution is not bad overall, and the proceedings might be compelling if it weren't for the feeling that you are just playing some generic MMO instead of feeling as though you are IN the Matrix. That may sounds harsh but even in flawed games like Star Wars Galaxies, when you ran across the dunes of Tattoine or explored Naboo for the first time, you felt as though you were in that world. Maybe it's just because the Matrix is nothing but an urban environment but MxO just doesn't hit the mark in the atmosphere department.

    There's a bunch more I could talk about but suffice it to say I couldn't see myself playing this. The beta will more than likely be uninstalled from my machine soon. Also I wanted to say that I realize this is a beta and final judgement should never be made until launch but that day is only a mere month away. When you have power house titles like City of Heroes, World of Warcraft and Guild Wars on thier way or already sitting on store shelves that do everything this game is trying to do but just happen to do it so much better......well, you get the point.
     
  4. Jeff_Standley

    Jeff_Standley Supporting Actor

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    Thanks for the review Romier, it's always nice to hear what you think. I had nigh hopes gor the Matrix Online and, well that kind of sucks. I was looking forward to playing this. I will definitely wait to see what kind of reviews it gets, and probably not end up playing at all. Your right it does have alot to compete with. The addition of WOW right now and COV coming out in the summer, I have no time to play the ones im in now. I hope more HTF'ers are going to jump back in City of Hero's when City of Villians comes out, I love that game and cant wait to get back in to it.
     
  5. Jeff_Standley

    Jeff_Standley Supporting Actor

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    Well the beta is finshed and the pre-order players are in right now. Anyone actually pre-order in the HTF? What's the final release verdict, anything change before launch that would make this game playable?
     
  6. Scott L

    Scott L Producer

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    A beta-tester I talked to said the fighting system is weird at first, (a databank of learned moves that are performed through a simple mouse click selection) but he found it pretty useful after a while.

    Personally I think it sounds like fun but MMO's, their subscription requirements, and the hours they suck dry from your life never interested me.
     
  7. Jeff_Standley

    Jeff_Standley Supporting Actor

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    Yeah the hours spent in MMO's are incredibly long. You have to watch it or you'll get sucked into an all nighter before you know it.

    I think the game sounds fun after reading alot about on the site, but after what some have said and what Romier wrote above I am scared of it too. I would love to play it because it sounds pretty cool but the price of a somewhat faulty game is keeping me away for now. I dont want to try out a crappy game for $65.
     
  8. Jeff_Standley

    Jeff_Standley Supporting Actor

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    Is anyone playing this game in the HTF?
    I played for the first month and wrote a review of it. But I jumped out after my free month ended and figured I would try it later after some bugs and fixes went through. I have some free time now for the rest of the summer and I would like to jump back into this game and give it another shot, but I have not heard anything from anyone about the state of it as of now. Anybody hear anything or playing it? The game had the potential of being pretty good but it definitely needed some work to fix it when I played it. I saw on the main page on thematrixonline.com that they are joining the 9 worlds into 3 worlds very soon, so that isnt saying much for memberships maybe. Also Sony still hasnt added this game to the all access pass yet which would be nice along with galaxies.
     

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