E3 10: Hands-on with DC Universe Online

All this week I am going to be giving ridiculously quick hands-on impressions of all the games I see on the E3 show floor. Since I think everything is a little amazing, they will be rated, from least to most favorite: 1 (A Little Amazing!), 2 (Kind of Amazing!), 3 (Pretty Amazing!), 4 (AMAZING!), and 5 (The Most Amazing Thing I Have Ever Seen!).

First off, the people at the Sony Online Entertainment booth here at E3 are ridiculously nice. I think you all should buy their games for that reason alone.

Okay, now to the task at hand: DC Universe Online!

To be honest, I don’t play that many MMOs. I respect them a lot, but they overwhelm me to the point of scaring me a little bit. But I am very interested in them. I just purchased a brand new PC so have really been looking to find a massive online game that I can sink my teeth into. I may have found what I was looking for with DC Universe Online.

In the game, you can choose to be a hero or a villain, selecting a power (fire, ice, gadgets, etc.), power source (sword, pistol, eyes, etc.), and movement (flight, super speed, acrobatics, etc.) as a starting point for your character. As with most MMOs, you travel the open world (including Metropolis and Gotham City, amongst others), fighting others and participating in surprisingly robust quests to level up your character.

What makes DC Universe Online stand out, though, is its stellar action-heavy gameplay. The game plays like God of War or Dante’s Inferno, but obviously with much more flexibility and focus on over-the-top superhero moves. This immediately turned me on since most MMOs confuse me with their complicated controls. It also helps that the game will be releasing on the PlayStation 3 (as well as PC). A console MMO is very rare these days, so I think many exclusive console gamers will be turned on by this radical decision.

I got to play a demo level set in Joker’s lair and both the level design and attention to detail really stood out (my hero character could interact with toys and gadgets scattered all over the infamous villain’s hideout).

I left playing DC Universe Online excited about trying more, but still a little hesitant that maybe the MMO genre is not for me. But my excitement for something like this is proof enough that this game is something special.

Rating: 3 out of 5 (Pretty Amazing!)

Chad Concelmo