The long-awaited North American release of Lost Ark is finally here, and we can give an accurate first impression based on the officially released client.
The need to know
- Lost Arks action-based combat is incredibly refreshing and engaging, especially for an ARPG title.
- There is decent optimzation, so Lost Ark runs well on different PC configuartions.
- Class diversity means each class feels and plays unique when measured against other classes.
- Launch day was a bit of a mess, but that’s to be expected with any title released these days.
- We recommend chaecking out Lost Ark to any ARPG fans who are looking for something new to sink their teeth into, and it’s free-to-play, so whats to lose?
Gameplay and Combat
With its initial launch a few years ago in Korea and Russia only, many ARPG fans outside of those regions have been craving the launch of Lost Ark.
Many games these days try to fill the MMO void that many players have, just as many games do it in a F2P model. Can Lost Ark stand out enough from the crowd to have lasting power?
In my opinion, possibly the most essential part of any game is its gameplay and combat (when applicable).
Lost Ark is an Isometric ARPG that is going to play similar to Diablo or Path of Exile that many gamers should be familiar with. However, unlike many MMOs that spoon-feed you abilities to ease you into your class, Lost Ark throws you in with a good amount of abilities right off the bat.
From the very beginning, I was happy to see that Lost Ark did have a fun and engaging combat system, at least to me. I went with a Paladin, and I was given abilities that offered three different types of combat styles that allowed me to mix up combat in a fun way. Overall, I can’t see many players dropping the game because they didn’t feel that the combat was engaging enough.
The gameplay, in the beginning, is your typical MMO startup. Going from area to area working on various quests while slowly progressing the story that isn’t all too interesting or unique.
From everything I’ve read on the game, it seems that until you get to max level and start dungeons, raids, and other usual MMO-related mechanics, you can expect to be slightly bored as you progress through the story.
Now, I can’t attest to this as I haven’t gone to max level yet, but I wouldn’t be too surprised. Many MMOs seem to suffer from this fate, unfortunately.
Graphics and Optimization
While Lost Ark does not provide any breathtaking graphics or visuals, they do a fine enough job to make the game look great without affecting too much performance. I would even go so far to say that they’re slightly better than good enough, especially for a game that is already technically a few years old.
I found Lost Ark to run very well on my PC. I had no major issues, no dips or stutters either. I didn’t go too crazy with my settings either. I put them on the default max, turned off a few usual settings such as motion blur, and I was on my way.
Fortunately, unlike Amazon Game’s previous MMO, New World, Lost Ark hasn’t had any issues of burning out new GPUs yet.
While I would be lying if I said I went in-depth with multiple classes, even from the little bit of exposure I had with classes in the character creator, it’s clear to me that there is a significant amount of diversity among the different classes and sub-classes and how they play.
Each of the classes has sub-classes that you can spec into once you hit level 10. These sub-classes can be drastically different sometimes, so be sure to try each one out thoroughly before you make that decision.
Class diversity is a great way to keep players interested in an MMO. Anyone who has ever played an MMO like a full-time job knows that even the best MMOs run out of content eventually, and rolling a new character is a great way to get more time out of a game that you’re loving.
Overall, from what I’ve seen on the class diversity so far, I give Lost Ark an A+ on the matter.
Usual Suspects When it Comes to Launch Day
Sadly, while many could have seen it coming, Lost Ark did not have an uneventful launch.
The founder’s pack launch, which occurred three days before the 11th of this month, went pretty smooth with some minor login issues. This may have given people hope that the full F2P launch would go well.
It did not.
There were constant login issues and incredibly long queues alongside a delayed launch time. They are getting better, and the Lost Ark team has addressed them as the game rolled out; however, much of the community was annoyed to see some favoritism to people who paid to play early and didn’t suffer from as many issues.
To keep it short, the game is fun, and I could see it doing well initially, but I would need to see more of the endgame before I could be confident that it will have lasting power. Something about the game feels shallow to me. That being said, I have been looking for an MMO to sink time into on those lazy Sundays, so for now, it will be Lost Ark., And hey, it’s free, so what do you have to lose in trying it?
Planning to Try Lost Ark?
If you’re planning to try out Lost Ark, Youtuber LegacyGaming has a great video on some early game tips for anyone starting the game. Check out the video below!
Are you planning to hop into Lost Ark? Let us know what class you’ll be going with in the comments or on Twitter!
Looking for more on Lost Ark? Keep it here.