Sunday, April 3, 2011


 At first glance, Age of Pirates 2 City of Abandoned Ships appears to be a strategy game with some resource building, some fighting, and a bit of RPG-style gameplay thrown in for fun. Deeper into the game, it becomes apparent the game leans more heavily toward the RPG aspect and less so on the building aspect. The RPG approach is very interesting, though, and in a better designed game, would definitely add nuance to the tired strategy field.

Unfortunately, Pirates 2 is pretty much a bit of a miss in terms of controls, a lack of a campaign mode, no tutorials and bland graphics and music. This is a shame, as the RPG system is well-implemented. Players can assign points to different skill attributes which have to do with luck, fighting, brains, brawn and other “pirate” attributes. These skills can also be increased during the course of the game.
There are three types of characters to choose at startup:  Merchant, Adventurer and Corsair. The merchant is more of a trade and build approach, while the adventurer and corsair are more of a combative tack. I, of course, chose Merchant. After a bit of an introduction, the RPG attributes are applied to the chosen character. The first few minutes of gameplay after this opening are spent practicing fighting, or not practicing, actually.  While this exercise is supposedly in place to teach your character the basic moves, there is no instruction at all from the game. The manual will have to be perused for the control assignments. 
 Once the fight is finished, players can either fight some more, or continue on.  And that's it, as far as any type of game direction. Your character will find him or herself standing in town while the townspeople walk around. Every now and then, one of them will make a request for a favor, which the player can choose to fulfill or not.  This is where some type of tutorial needs to be implemented, as these quests will decide the outcome of later events for the player.
There is also no in-game instruction for trade. The player is on his or her own. This total lack of instruction makes for a pretty difficult time at first, until the player can figure it out somewhat.  The manual has some information, but it's more of a description of items. This is a needed feature, but there is no overall game strategy described, except for a very brief blurb in the front. This describes a few things that players need to do soon into the game. When first reading this, though, players won't know why they need to do these things. There also needs to be some type of instruction on the use of the interface.
Because of the lack of instruction and tutorials in the game, players will probably miss out on all the things they can be doing at first. When not fulfilling a quest, players can visit various areas in the cities and do things like recruit a ship’s crew, gather information, and get some needed rest. They can buy and sell goods, hunt for treasure, and go looking for a good fight. At sea, well, the world is your oyster if you have the right crew and the fastest ship! And when time is weighing heavily, players have lots of menus to view and manage their stats and items. I could have done without the whole brothel thing, though.
Fighting at sea is handled much better than fighting on land. The ships can shoot at each other, and grapple when close together. Players can fight in either first-person or third-person mode. In first-person, the fighting is handled by the player and is quite fun. In third-person, the player can see the overall scene, but fighting is conducted in more of an automatic mode. There are several types of moves and different types of ammunition.
Where's the campaign mode? I need one! I need goals! If I have no goal, I have no incentive to keep playing. Just playing to play isn't enough for me, no matter how interesting the game.  Grouping a ton of quests into pseudo campaigns isn’t the same thing at all. And this game is not all that interesting, despite the incredible amount of things to do. This has to do with the sameness of many of the quests, and the really bad control system.
The controls for movement are frustrating. They are a combination of mouse-and-keyboard commands. Hitting a key on the keyboard will toggle between running and walking, but only if held down. To walk instead of run, players have to keep pressing the key while pressing the mouse. And as to fighting, this is pretty awkward as well. The three mouse buttons are mapped to the different attacks, with the keyboard used for toggling between defense and attack modes. Having to keep switching back and forth is hard. It's a good thing I chose Merchant, as I have a difficult time fighting with a good control system.
It's a shame that the controls and lack of instruction make the game frustrating, as there is quite a bit of deep gameplay happening. For those who enjoy Sandbox mode, this game has the potential for some long night sessions. But for those of us who want something to reach for, there is a lack of interest after awhile. I kept having the idea while playing that this game really needs some type of Quest for Glory theme, where the story tied all the RPG elements together. Quest for Glory combined a great adventure story with fun RPG features like building up skills during the course of the game. Pirates could have used a great story to tie everything together.
Age of Pirates 2 is not a bad game, and there is a lot to like. The quests are mostly interesting, and the way in which the quests and other actions direct the gamepath is intriguing. But there needs to be more than just fulfilling quests for the sake of quests. There is no reason to keep doing favors for people, except for advancing one's character development. And the controls need some serious work. Best for players who really enjoy strategy games with freeplay, and who are good at keyboard-and-mouse combo attacks. 
Gameplay: 6.0
Despite the enormous amount of things to do in Age of Pirates 2, the control system dampens the enthusiasm somewhat. It’s just not a lot of fun moving around the cities, and the fights are difficult at best. And, there is no real campaign mode.
Graphics: 7.0
The graphics are adequate, but nothing to get excited about.
Sound: 7.0
Ditto for the sound. A game like this really should have better music to fit the whole Caribbean pirate theme.
Difficulty: Hard
A total lack of instruction in the game makes playing difficult for the first few hours of gameplay.
Concept: 7.0
The mixture of RPG and simulation aspects is a good idea, which, while not strictly new, is still not the norm for most of these types of games. However, the execution is less than desired.
Overall: 6.5
This is one of those games that has great potential, but has been derailed by bad design choices. The control system needs to be revisited, a tutorial added, and a campaign mode would be a good addition. If there is an Age of Pirates 3, I hope these issues will be addressed.
pass :

2 komentar:

  1. maaf saya mau nanya ko banyak file yg gak ada yah ? part 2 , part 30 dan masih banyak lagi pada kemana yah ?

  2. Downloadnya dsini aja bro ada 8 part :