DC Universe Online Game

DC Universe Online Review – Massively multiplayer online action with DC licenses? I’m sold.

Peace is Just a Moving Van Away

With all of the trouble that seems to go in Gotham City, it’s a wonder why any people actually live there at all, don’t you think? The DC Universe has to be one of the most dangerous places to fictionally exist in, considering the constant struggle between good and evil that often gets fought out in a very public and destructive manner. The public destruction and ongoing upset caused by said good and evil are after all bad enough to have had countless films made depicting the action including The Dark Knight trilogy and the ridiculous number of Superman films. With all this madness, what’s one more fictional depiction of a comprehensive universe of good and evil characters? Well, this world in question sort of stands out a little because I’m talking about DC Universe Online here, a massively multiplayer online (MMO) game that puts you in the DC universe with some impressive graphics and some levels and equipment to grind for, plus it’s all official so you’ve got an abundance of good and evil DC characters to choose from.

Dichotomy By Design

So how have DC handled the MMO format, you may ask? Well firstly, they have done so remarkably well by taking the DC universe and applying a role-playing progression to the action that allows you to do some lengthy exploration and become involved in a ridiculous quantity of battles, and all the while (at least initially) you are levelling up and becoming stronger with better equipment. The most impressive part of the structure of the game is the fact that not only do you get to choose a character the beginning but you must choose between playing for either good or evil, with both existing in the very same universe and events, opportunities, and progression playing out according to your choices. The game begins with a choice between characters, after which you get to choose a weapon, powers, and even a mentor (Lex Luthor was my choice as a first-time player of evil). You get the opportunity to change your weapons and develop your powers throughout the game as well.

Progressing through the game means two things: battles, and upgrades in order to make you better at fighting battles. It may sound a little closed in on itself, but DC Universe Online is unapologetically heavy on combat whether you like it or not. Regardless of your initial weapon choices, you can move on to better weapons according to your good or evil status with offering such as dual-wield pistols, staffs, one-handed combat, and hand blasters. You can also go to either one of your headquarters (the Justice League of America Watchtower for the heroes and Arkham Asylum if you took the villainous path) and customise your items and appearance, adding to your attribute and controlling your look as you do so.

Battles, Looks, and Closing the Books

The battles are where DC Universe Online truly stands out in the MMO world because the impressive physics engine combined with the high level of control you are afforded over you character’s movements and actions are features that aren’t simply standard in many MMOs such as City of Heroes (may it rest in peace). There are limits to your power or ‘mana’ as it is known in RPG circles, but weapon skills can be dished out at will or however frequently you can mash the buttons or click your mouse. You’ll be able to learn new combinations as you level up as well, but you’ll find that you reach your level cap fairly quickly, meaning that you may have to rely on grinding for items if you absolutely must feel like you’re progressing somewhere. Though the well of liquid entertainment runs a little low on supply, it doesn’t dry up altogether thanks to the refined graphics and brilliant battle animations and the sheer volume of combat that you will become engrossed in. DC Universe Online isn’t a game that will please everyone, but those who do give it a try will more than derive enough out of it within the first free month for it to be considered worth their time.

80/100