"Anarchy Online"... Only Half of That Product Name is True

Hey kids! Looking to plop down $60 to unwillingly beta-test FunCom's newest shovelware title, Anarchy Online, but your parents would rather have you do something more constructive with your money, like throw it into the fireplace or put a downpayment on a crack cocaine laboratory? Well don't worry, as Something Awful is now bringing you the joys of trying to play Anarchy Online... straight to your computer and absolutely free of charge! That's right, we've optimized the Anarchy Online experience and were able to compact it into a file less than 30k, saving you both time AND money! Get ready because here comes your 100% free version of Anarchy Online, straight from Something Awful to you!

I hope you enjoyed your Anarchy Online experience! If you didn't, make sure not to EVER voice your opinions stating so or else the AO nutball fanboys will crawl out from their parents' bedrooms and begin assaulting you until certain orifices of your body are 12 times larger than their normal size. After all, game companies don't owe ANYTHING to us, the paying customer! They don't NEED to sell a product that's finished or even works properly! We should be thankful that they're gracing us with their mere presence, allowing us the opportunity to purchase their products and then stare at our desktop after trying in vain to play them!

In case you can't tell, I've been trying to play Anarchy Online for the past three days. Here are some statistics I have compiled from the game since playing:

ERROR: Cannot connect to login server

34 times

ERROR: Playshifting failed: The server was unable to start the playfield41 times
ERROR: Area change not initiated on server29 times
ERROR: Server has timed out58 times
ERROR: Game crash (AO error report)7 times
Mission objective are completed, yet mission does not end3 times
Fallen through world geometry and got trapped underneath / inside a building with no way out but to commit suicide2 times

I would like to humbly thank FunCom for allowing me the privilege, the honor, and the joy of paying $56 to personally beta test their game. I suppose in this day and age it's too much to expect a computer game to function correctly upon purchase, or even function at all. Congratulations, FunCom, on once again reminding me why I've only bought one PC game in the last 10 months. Once everybody has moved to console games, due to their stability and lack of patches, I'm sure all you arrogant business clowns who keep pushing out unfinished lumps of shit can have a meeting and wonder how the industry got to the way it currently is. When I buy a console game, I can safely expect to take it out of its packaging and begin playing it the instant I get it. I know that I will not have to wait 10 hours or a day or a week or a month before it lives up to the features that it promises. More and more people are going to soon realize this with every half-assed game that's released months before it's ready, and you clowns are soon going to find yourselves out of a job. I'm sick and tired of paying money to beta test your games. I, as a consumer, do not owe your company this service. I have paid money for your product and I expect it to work out of the box the exact moment that it's purchased. Anything less is directly due to you and your product's shortcomings.

For God's sake, just make games that are playable. That's all I'm asking. You have my money; now fulfill your end of the bargain.

UPDATE: I just finished playing AO for a solid hour without crashing. In that time I was killed twice by creatures which the game would not allow me to target because they were stuck in the walls and "out of range". Despite being lodged in a wall and being untarget-able, they managed to hit me no matter where I ran in the dungeon. In addition, pets do not seem to like navigating through dungeons, as my pet couldn't follow me through the rooms and never attacked ANYTHING inside. Pets are completely worthless in the mission dungeons. Keep in mind that this all was following the two "fall into world geometry and get stuck lodged underneath a building" encounters, which required me to kill myself and lose all my experience points. I can safely say that the only thing worse than not being able to play Anarchy Online now is actually being able to play it in its current state of beta-ness. While this game has tremendous potential, it's currently a steaming pile of parrot shit. Even FunCom realizes this, as their PR goon has resorted to posting announcements begging sites to NOT review Anarchy Online. Good job, FunCom!

First Impressions!

As slightly hinted to above, I bought Anarchy Online and attempted to review it. I don't think I need to say that he results were not too successful. After giving up any chance of reviewing this product, I decided to instead offer my own "first impressions" of the game, detailing an hour of play. Here's a little teaser image from the piece, taken during the time when I was trying to recruit NPC cleaning robots and stationary objects to my party of roving Bureaucrat secretaries of doom:

Later on in the article I attempted to solve the mystery of who stole my apartment's refrigerator... and the result may chill you to the bone! This is one Anarchy Online article that you don't want to miss, so by writing this, I'm allowing you to miss every single other AO article out there except this one. So go ahead and read it! You'll never have to look at another one again! You know you want to!

– Rich "Lowtax" Kyanka (@lowtax)

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