Lacks in quest variety but more than makes up for it with exciting combat. I tried going back to SWTOR after TERA's CBTs but just couldn't do it. The beginning is a bit slow but after you get to 20 (takes a few hours) game totally opens up. I'm still waiting to see what endgame is like but based on the first 30-40 levels i'm pumped.
Can't believe people lying here about graphics. YES sliders work to increase draw distance, and the game runs awesome on my 2 year old rig, even on almost max settings. Support is also super on top of things. Live chat and phone on day 1. Yes please.
In the past few years, there have been a lot of MMOs pop up following the same basic formula played out by EQ2, WoW, WAR and the like. There's a lot here that is similar. Questing follows the three basic paths (play postman, kill x number of x, pick up x number of x), and it's one of the dull points of the game. You have your equipment and enchants and stat itemization, just like those other games. The story is good at best, boring at worst. Crafting is uninventive and derivative. Also, the K-RPG lineage pops up from time to time as a distraction (big-busted female models showing too much skin, ridiculous cut scenes, failing to gather a resource node).
But, after an extended play of the game, you quickly realize that Tera is not about questing or exploring a storyline or crafting. What Tera is about is team combat, and once you walk down some long, dangerous, monster filled paths to get to that big bad boss with some friends, the game hooks you. It's about combat and exploration, and in those two regards it succeeds marvelously.
Think Monster Hunter or Phantasy Star Online, not WoW or SWToR. The combat is refreshing, though it takes a lot of getting used to at first, particularly if you're used to playing other MMOs. Instead of standing in spot and trading blows, you're dodging, looking for enemy context clues, and building up combos to deal monsterous damage or stagger the enemy. It feels nearly Devil May Cry or God of War in execution, and it's wonderful. You can mouse & keyboard or controller it up; both feel great.
In some bizarre, masochistic design decision, the game starts off incredibly easy. Easy as in extremely boring and dull easy. The starting zone is this cookie-cutter, happy island that one commenter in Area chat referred to as "Disneyland minus the fun." The devs clearly knew this, as there's a prologue that lets you experience level 20 combat from the get-go. It's dark, ominous, full of baddies, and is a total blast. Then, you get dumped into snoozeville. Fortunately, once you get past the 2nd zone, the game ramps up the excitement and the difficulty. This is when it truly starts to shine. As zones open up and enemies become more challenging, what you get is a huge exploration from boss fight to boss fight, with some thrown in for gear and experience. And even though it can take a while to get from one place to another, you won't mind, because travel is painless with all the eye candy.
This game is utterly breathtaking. To say it runs graphical circles around its competition is actually demeaning the beauty of it. Light effects and shadows add depth and ambience, colors explode off the screen, and animations are fluid and smooth like a AAA action game. At one point, I found myself stopping to just stare at a priest's spells, only to find myself squashed by a gigantic boss for not paying attention. It's MMO eye candy you've never seen before.
If someone says it's "just like WoW" or a "WoW clone," shut them down and stop listening. This game is about as similar to WoW as a Hummer is to a Corolla. Sure, they both have four wheels, an engine and a transmission, but the goal is totally different. This is an open-world dungeon crawl of the lineage of Diablo or Gauntlet with the combat genes from a fast-paced action game like Ninja Gaiden.
That said, it won't be for everyone. Those put off by K-RPG elements are going to find this game nauseating, If you're looking for a deep and complex MMO where you can theorycraft, this isn't it,
However, if you're a big fan of action games and dungeon crawls, give it a shot.