NCSoft has posted a video titled "Aion Visions" showcasing a hefty update to the game: Underwater combat, huge enemies, realistic weather effects, and a graphics update that makes the gorgeous game even gorgeous-er.
Oh sure, the official description as posted on YouTube sounds like someone ran a bunch of Korean text through Google Translate, but the video speaks for itself: NCSoft's Aion will (at some point) be receiving a fairly hefty update in the next few months, which adds several new features to the game. As seen in the trailer above, there will be new lands to explore and new monsters (including some massive desert worm-things), including underwater combat - but let's be honest. Does anyone actually like underwater combat in MMOs? Sure, it'll be nice to have characters that can actually swim, but underwater fighting is just a pain in the ass in any game I've ever played.
What's striking, though, is the visual updates shown in the video including a graphical overhaul. It probably looks more significant than it actually is, since it seems that it's more a change in how the game handles lighting instead of all-new textures and models, but it's still staggering. Aion was already one of the best-looking MMORPGs on the market, and just came out here in the West this September - and they're already updating the graphics to look even better?
Another cool touch is the addition of realistic weather effects. We see a snowfall that builds up on the ground and scenery over time, only to melt away once the sun comes out. I'm hoping it's a little more subtle (and slower) than the speed in the video, but it's still a great little feature that more games should have.
On the other hand, while it all looks very pretty, one wonders if it will do anything to fixing the games problems - quests that send you running all over the place, poor drop rates on "Collect 10 Whatever" quests, and an abundance of zones that don't actually allow you to fly like the game advertised.
On the other other hand, you get to ride a T-Rex and use it to attack monsters. So that might just be worth the trade-off.