By Maurice Lewis
Published by: Sony Online Entertainment (SOE)
Developed by: Sony Online Entertainment (SOE)
Number of Players: MMORPG (online) or 1 Player
Release Date: January 11, 2011
MSRP: $49.99 PC/ $59.99 for PS3
Rated: T for Teen
For: Mild Blood, Mild Language, Mild Suggestive Themes, Violence
Also Available On: PC/PS3
Rating: It’s ok.
DC Universe is a MMORPG, but don’t be fooled by the genre; it has certain elements that may surprise you. As most MMO style games, you start off at the character creation screen. You have the choices between being a superhero or a villain, which in a sense is choosing a faction. Character creation actually gives you templates of your favorite hero or villain, such as Superman, Batman, Joker, Catwoman etc… I personally created my superhero to look like Magneto (I know taboo !).
When it comes to choosing factions I think DCUO lacks certain characteristics that made choosing factions a big part of your mmorpg experience. There is a neat little option where you’re able to choose your characters personality. This determines your characters idle stance (animation your character does while you just stand there). The most part in character creation is choosing your mentor. He/she is esentially your quest giver. So choose wisely.
After choosing your character’s looks, you can choose its abilities and characteristics. You can select from a variety of things, such as having your character have frost abilities, fire abilities, mental, nature abilities etc… You also have secondary abilities, such as being strong physically with punches/brawler guns, kungfu, and even gadgets. You can also duel wield certain weapons. I really believe Sony did a good job implementing all of these abilities, giving you control of making your character balanced and well rounded. Time to choose your super human ability. Your choices are, flying/Superman Acrobatics/Batman, super speed/Flash, these are your modes of transportation. Hey it beats riding the bus right?
You start off in the newbie zone which turned out to be confusing. If I wasn’t a veteran MMO player I would’ve been stuck in Brainiac’s ship for hours. Another question, Why do both factions start off in the same basic training mode? Basic training consist of you learning your hotkeys and practicing your abilities.
Time to quest. After making it through your basic training, you meet up with your quest giver/mentor. For example, if you’re evil and you chose The Joker, you will be placed in your home city, which is Gotham. You grab a quest or a few, then you’re on your way. You have your basic start up quest, Locate Mr X, or kill X amount of enemies. I didnt enjoy questing at all. Every quest felt so cramped. Many people tagged my mobs on pure accident, not only that but some quest were bunched up right next to each other causing multiple NPC interference.
Targeting enemies was also a major issue for me. The AI tries to auto-target mobs but it fails miserably and is only 100% accurate with mobs that are directly in front of you. The fighting system makes up for the lackluster questing experience. You have so many combinations you can use, I found myself actually interacting, and having more character control than im use to. If the going gets tough, you have tons of escape routes. I found flying to be the best ability, because you were basically unable to be touched by acrobatics, and super speed. I’ve noticed after every long quest chain, you go into a dungeon, and you’re fighting enemies from that quest chain, sometimes fighting a mini boss that you may remember from certain DC comics. DCUO has an alert system, this takes the place of having a instance group. Alerts are for groups of 4. I tried giving the PVE another chance because I love doing group dungeons. Doing this also felt like I was just doing one big quest chain, and the experience was also lack luster.
PvP is very entertaining; its a breath of fresh air pulling off lethal combinations leaving your enemies wondering what hit them easily makes world PVP exciting. You feel like you’re in a comic book. With all that said, leveling seems to be a breeze, my only gripe is the skill tree seems to be pointless, as I rarely saw any real benefits. The level cap is 30, and you will quickly realize the game play was created with nothing but pvp in mind.
My final thoughts
Character Creation was my favorite part of the game, as its every childs dream to be a superhero and while you may not actually be that superhero, you get to control one and interact with all of your favorite comic book heros. The rest of the gave leaves a lot to be desired. There is lots of room for improvement but right now it’s just a break from the monotony of another MMO.