Wanderlust: Rebirth

Wanderlust: Rebirth

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ikillomega Oct 7, 2012 @ 4:35pm
Broken: This game needs a lot of work.
Wanderlust: Rebirth is a game built upon a solid foundation. It has a good look, style, and a nice level of depth and replayability. However, all of that goes to waste once you actually start cutting into the meat of the game.

First off, and most noticeably, are the incessant status effects that the countless mobs cast upon your oft-defenseless avatar (Note: I noticed this much more on the cleric than I did on the elementalist, which would point to a separate balance issue altogether). Poison effects are extensively overpowered, barely negated by my heal-over-time and were occasionally a kiss of death if I was being mobbed. Worse, yet is that stuns, freezes, vines and other character-disabling abilities are spammed to the point of frustration by large numbers of enemies in groups. These attacks not only render you defenseless for way, way, WAY too long, but they essentially create a vacuum of frustration which ultimately sucks all of the fun out of the game. At some points these attacks were timed, so that a blast of ice or the like would be sailing on the way towards my character just as the status effect I was under wore off, these were more-often-than-not unavoidable due to my next complaint.

Control bugs are rampant in this game. Characters seem to fight me while playing to the point that simply changing directions seemed a seemingly-insurmountable task. My characters also would find themselves stuck on the environment, NPCs, enemy sprites or even other players at times, which could point to a frustrating collision detection-related glitch.

Now, for my biggest complaint. Wanderlust: Rebirth is, quite possibly, the single most unbalanced game I've ever played. I've seen lots of complaints about money being an issue but it really goes deeper than just money. The simple task of upgrading your gear (something made paramount by the game's very structure) is a winding, soul-crushing descent into tedium, forcing players to grind for hours and hours and hours to get all the tiny little pieces needed to craft one recipe, just so they can do more than 1/600th of a boss's health in damage per attack, or so I can defend against attacks that seem to do way more damage than they should be doing, given the scarcity of money and the stratospheric requirements to craft better items given the recipe drops I've obtained. This, in the end, leaves this game to one long, joyless grind. If grinding for hours with nothing to show for it, and doing it while either bitterly agitated or volcanically furious is your thing, then this game was truly made for you.

I have heard that this game has been in development for upwards of five years. It shows. I mentioned to a friend, in conversation about Wanderlust, that this often occurs with films (a subject I'm far more versed in, by the way) in that a project will be caught up in creative limbo or will break the bank or whatever happens. The creative team ultimately attempts to get "something" out there. In games this is much, much more common, especially in the post-Internet gaming world where every game can be patched via the Web and any issues and problems can be resolved that way. I do not presume to know, specifically, why this game was in development for so long, but it seems like a good idea was drawn out and then a lot of really bad, arbitrary decisions and needless limitations (like the inability to trade with friends) were stacked on top of it. Then, when it came time for development, a lot of issues were left unchecked, untested, unnoticed, or just unresolved in hopes that they could "just be fixed later" instead of trying to put out a prime game at launch.

The concept of Wanderlust: Rebirth is a good one, a solid action/RPG grinder with online co-op and some good humor and writing. That IS, technically what we got. Well, minus the "solid" part anyway. This seems like a Beta. It seems incomplete, clunky, heavily broken and full of problems that make it neither fun, or even really worth anyone's time. Skip this one, if you know someone who has it, have them keep you updated about any fixes that may come along as time goes on but as it stands, this is a game that is broken at a mechanical level in ways that would require a complete overhaul to really repair. Allow for money drops, fix the leveling system by implementing either new stats for damage and defense or increasing the output and accessibility of new weapons and gear, cut the time which stuns last by half and reduce the casting rate/chance of the attack by their spamming enemies, work on the AI teammates in single player so they aren't a bunch of rushing idiots, fix the numerous collision detection bugs in the game that make maneuvering cumbersome, and overhaul the AI so that you aren't buried under a volley of animation sprites indicating that "Something is happening" which often make impossible to see what that "something" is.

I've railed on this game too long. I just wanted to get the word out to developers and to players about this game. Do not be fooled as I was by its glossy finish, you cannot rely on this game for a fun grind. Play Torchlight or Bastion instead, they are far better and I've heard that Torchlight 2 is great too, though I haven't played it.
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Showing 1-15 of 17 comments
Beef Taco Nov 5, 2012 @ 5:25pm 
torchlight 2 is amazing!!!!
MissFapulous Nov 5, 2012 @ 8:39pm 
For real i completely agree, especially the money part. I was grinding and i was like getting recipes and happy that i got some really awesome recipes that i can craft for awesome items. But then i looked...100K COINS AND 3 BLUE ITEM FOR AN ORANGE ITEM? not to mention the materials i need to craft they aint easy to come by. I mean the game concept is great, the graphic and gameplay is fantastic...just that...we need more patching please.

Stuff i feel like should be patched:

lower price for recipes or increase money dropped
more level/modes maybe?
a new class would spike things up a little
more balanced classes.
more inventory spaces.
Leth  [developer] Nov 24, 2012 @ 5:34pm 
You can play those other games if you don't want a challenging experience. =P

We took a long time to develop the game because we're only two people who worked on it in our spare time. We've been playing for years, and we have users who have logged hundreds of hours in the game, so we know there is a market that appreciates what we've done. It's an action game, first and foremost; it's going to take concentration and timing to succeed.

With that said, we've been listening to suggestions about inventory space and "item grinding" and have patched the game recently, removing grey drops and green blueprints. this helps "hoarding" players manage their inventory space much easier, and also saves money and time obtaining a green item set (which can now be bought in the shop instead of crafted there).

We've balanced the game immensely after implementing Player vs Player mode.

Hope you guys find time to give it another whirl.

See you online!
Scyris Dec 1, 2012 @ 9:47am 
I barely go tinto the game because I had 2 issues, 1: the sound wasn't working and 2: was the clown who made the control scheme compeltly string out on smack or something? This game has to have the absoulty worse controls I have ever seen in a game, In dev for 5 years my♥♥♥♥♥ more like in dev for 6 months.

Also there is a diffrence between challenge and outright unfairness in a game, having enemies that can chain spam status effects that you have no way to resist is not challenge its just broken. Try this stunt in other games and the frustrations will just mount just as much as they have here. I think the devs need to add a immunity timer to status effects so after one wears off you cannot be hit by that again for maybe say 5 seconds, make this apply to the enemies too.

The game still is not balanced properly, some classes are vastly overpowered while some are so weak they just are near worthless. I e-mailed the devs asking about new content and legenth and such, and I was told that no new content will be coming because they are working on part 2. Though hopefully they will patch the balance/status effect issues.
UnbrokenWhite Dec 2, 2012 @ 8:59pm 
The game's controls are pretty clunky... Ive seen the option for a gamepad use, but I bought the game intending to play it on my comp, with a keyboard and mouse. I dunno, that may just be me. :P
crunchyfrog Jan 19, 2013 @ 8:26pm 
IkillOmega, I have to say I really agree with you.

As an ex-gaming journalist, I certainly try to have as much empathy as possible, not just for the players, but the devs too. Now, I appreciate that the game may well have been patched/updated, but the biggest problem that is absolutely TABOO is the unfairness (as Scyris also mentions).

There is indeed a difference between challenge and downright unfair play. The difference should be readily apparent - a challenge should be something that demands work or a certain "route" to be worked out, with the ultimate goal being attainable. Having such a challenge, particularly in a game like this should NEVER be down to luck or unfair game mechanics. That is simply not on.

Off the top of my head, I would suggest that the simplest way to alleviate this issue is to start by having the following formulaic approach - when an enemy hits you with an status effect, the chances of a subsequent effect hitting you should be reduced greatly. If, by chance, you DO get hit again before the first attack has worn off, then the chance of a third should be greatly reduced again. This enemy "penalty" would run either for the length of the battle or for a given time period.

I'm not familiar with Game Maker (or whatever this was written in) as my programming days have long since passed. However, something along these lines should be done.

Secondly, the controls. They are horribly clunky, and I do not believe for one second that any tester of note would not notice this immediately - it would certainly be worth comment if nothing else.

With respect, Leth, I realise you're only a couple of guys working on the game in your spare time, so to me, the time taken to work on a game is rather moot. However, a word of advice - you should rarely (almost NEVER) dismiss or retort to comments with "well, our testers didn't say anything or liked it this way". It tends to come across as superior, and no matter how many testers you could feasibly lay your hands on, NO company could ever match such numbers with the people who buy the game in the end. Ergo, your customers are the ones you should primarily listen to.

Now, I don't mean that to sound offensive (or holier than thou). This is merely my input based on my years of journalism experience and as a game collector for more than 35 years (I'm lucky enough to have tens of thousands of games - and yes, I can prove that as I get asked about it a lot).

I hope you accept this as sincere criticism, as I feel these two factors alone would make a marked difference. Certainly in my personal situation, it's making the difference between me playing it and not bothering at all.

By all means, if you want further input or have any questions about what I've said, please do get back to me either by responding here, or via PM.
Last edited by crunchyfrog; Jan 19, 2013 @ 8:49pm
Leth  [developer] Jan 19, 2013 @ 11:45pm 
As I've written many times, we're always interested in fan feedback, especially regarding possible improvements to the game.

If you guys have some ideas to share on how we may improve the controls, feel free to post them. =D
Last edited by Leth; Jan 19, 2013 @ 11:48pm
crunchyfrog Jan 20, 2013 @ 5:55am 
Thanks for responding so quickly Leth!

I certainly hope my comments didn't come across as heavy-handed, as it wouldn't be the first time I've given that impression :) Sorry if I've missed your previous comments too - one of the problems of having so many games is that time can be spread rather thinly across them at times, so I will readily confess I hadn't read much here.

Anyway, I'm going to work on the game a little more and then I'll gladly offer some more precise comments to you, rather than the general stuff I've given thus far.
Last edited by crunchyfrog; Jan 20, 2013 @ 5:56am
Leth  [developer] Jan 22, 2013 @ 3:06pm 
Frankly, we don't really think the controls are poorly designed since they were designed to be used with a controller. We DO believe, however, that most people's complaints with the game stem from struggling to win and then looking for elements of the game to single-out as flaws.

With that said, we're open minded to offering an alternative control-scheme in the game that centers around mouse-control. It's just a matter of pin-pointing the best option.

We're also considering making it easier to obtain 100% on Normal in an patch.
crunchyfrog Jan 23, 2013 @ 8:44am 
Actually, Leth, having played the game more and getting used to what controls you need and when, it is easy to configure them to suit. So, I absolutely agree, there is nothing wrong with the controls at all.

The only thing is that the default setup is a bit messy, but this is rendered utterly moot due to being able to reconfigure them.
Leth  [developer] Jan 23, 2013 @ 12:47pm 
Originally posted by crunchyfrog555:
Actually, Leth, having played the game more and getting used to what controls you need and when, it is easy to configure them to suit. So, I absolutely agree, there is nothing wrong with the controls at all.

The only thing is that the default setup is a bit messy, but this is rendered utterly moot due to being able to reconfigure them.
Flagged for making my day! =D

Never happens around here... =P
crunchyfrog Jan 23, 2013 @ 3:08pm 
Originally posted by Leth:
Originally posted by crunchyfrog555:
Actually, Leth, having played the game more and getting used to what controls you need and when, it is easy to configure them to suit. So, I absolutely agree, there is nothing wrong with the controls at all.

The only thing is that the default setup is a bit messy, but this is rendered utterly moot due to being able to reconfigure them.
Flagged for making my day! =D

Never happens around here... =P

Aw, glad I could do that. :)

I believe in being fair. Criticism is fine, but you should always be prepared to admit you may be wrong, and that you can also offer positive comment too.

I haven't had that much time to play but I have to say the game is growing on me. I'm keen to offer more feedback if there's anything I can say worthwhile. Hopefully, I can be proved wrong again.

I'm keen to see how I the issue with status effects bears out.
Last edited by crunchyfrog; Jan 23, 2013 @ 3:09pm
.PrimeMover. Feb 5, 2013 @ 4:14pm 
Flaws are still very apparent in this game. I didn't want an easy game, but I also didn't want an insanely frustrating game. If poison were dialed back a bit, and the insane spamming of such abilities by creatures were as well, this might be fun after the first hour of play. Status effects need to be confronted, thats all.

Torchlight 2 can be hard, if you play on the hardest setting and don't use a Beserker, BTW.
Last edited by .PrimeMover.; Feb 5, 2013 @ 4:18pm
Leth  [developer] Feb 6, 2013 @ 4:04pm 
Thanks Prime.

We'll consider dialing back status effects further (on Normal Difficulty).
.PrimeMover. Feb 6, 2013 @ 4:16pm 
Thanks for the response Leth, I like the game alot, don't get me wrong. It just needs to be a bit more accessible to newer players, so they don't get frustrated and throw it down.
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