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History

Vanguard was created by a company called Sigil Games Online. A company Started By Jeff Butler and Brad McQuaid that were well known for playing key roles in the MMORPG EverQuest. They started Sigil in 2002 where they would begin production on their first game Vanguard. Originally the game has plans to be published by Microsoft however rumors began to surface that Microsoft began to pressure Sigil to release the game before it was done. Then in 2006 Sigil acquired the rights to their game and announced that Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) would be a co-publisher of Vanguard.

Vanguard was a very ambitious game. It brought many new features into the MMORPG genre such as open world housing where certain areas would be designated for crafters to build houses for people and these houses could be used as a store front or whatever means the owner chose. Additionally, a new type of play style called Diplomacy was added via a card game used to influence game play for cities and those inside the city.

Vanguard was hailed as the spiritual successor to EverQuest by many fans of the series because of its return to the difficult play style that had not used in MMORPGs at the time.

In August of 2005, beta testing began and lasted until January 23, 2007. The game launched on January 30, 2007 to the public. The launch started fairly well with fourteen servers and 242,000 players in first month sales. However, unfinished zones, broken quests, and lack of polish only left about half of the initial subscribers to become active subscribers past the first free month.

Mixed reviews from websites like Gamespy awarded it with the "Biggest Disappointment” award and MMORPG.com gave it an award for being the "Lamest Launch." Another plague that Vanguard encountered was the release of The Burning Crusade expansion for World of Warcraft.

On May 15, 2007, Sony Online Entertainment (SOE) acquired all the rights for Vanguard as well as Sigil. Sony took the initiative and began a major overhaul on Vanguard from start to finish. They fixed many bugs and performance issues as well as adjusted many game mechanics including the corpse run system.

Over the years, SOE continued to improve the quality of the game, but was unsuccessful in bringing large numbers of players back to the game. It was officially shut down on July 31, 2014.

Progression

Progression in Vanguard is referred to as Spheres.

Adventuring

Adventuring is the typical leveling system that consists of defeating enemies in combat and completing quests for adventuring experience.

There are fifteen Adventuring classes in Vanguard: Saga of Heroes. They are divided into a set of archetypes. Vanguard is a game in which the characters have set group roles in the game.

Tanks

These characters take damage in combat; their goal for the group is to keep people from getting damaged.

  • Warrior: This is the basic tank class.
  • Paladin: This tank class is a hybrid that is able to both tank and heal for a group.
  • Dread Knight: This tank is a hybrid class that specializes in using stuns and life taps to control the battle.

Melee DPS

Melee based DPS classes use melee weapons to cause damage to their opponents. While they are better protected than Mana based classes they cannot with stand straight head to head combat as well as tanks.

  • Rogue: This class is a stealth based attacker which is able to attack its opponent from behind for immense damage.
  • Ranger: A master of ranged combat, stealth, dual wielding, with the ability to use some Druidic spells.
  • Monk: A master of martial arts. At level 15 he/she gets to choose a specialization in either.
    1. Drunken Style - Tank version of the monk with better defenses than other monks.
    2. Harmonious Style - A monk that specializes in debuffs.
    3. Dragon Monk - A monk that specializes in DPS.
  • Bard: A group utility class. Has the ability to make its own song with its own effects by taking various parts and combining them.

Healers

These classes cast healing spells that help their allies in combat, healing the damage they have received.

  • Disciple: A monk like healer, does not require mana as it uses "Jin."
  • Blood Mage: A light armor wearing healer, the blood mage steals health from enemies to heal his group.
  • Shaman: Can wear medium armor, wards off damage, group buffs.
  • Cleric: Can wear heavy armor. Uses big spike heals and has good group buffs.

Mana DPS

These classes cast spells that damage enemies.

  • Sorcerer: A high DPS spell caster.
  • Necromancer: Master of undeath. Able to summon undead pets to help it. Uses lifetaps.
  • Druid: A high DPS caster that uses the forces of nature to help it. Druids also have small heals.
  • Psionicist: Crowd control and a utility class for mages.

Crafting Sphere

A complex crafting system that involves taking recipes and raw materials then combing them to be anything from a simple sword to an entire house, guild hall, or even a player driven ship. There are three crafting classes and two specialization classes per crafting class. The player chooses a specialization upon reaching level eleven in their crafting sphere.

Outfitter

  • Tailor: Makes light armor as well as other things like backpacks.
  • Leatherworker: Makes medium armors as well as saddlebags for mounts.

Artificer

  • Carpenter: Play a key role in making ships, houses, and wooden weaponry.
  • Mineralogist: Makes jewelry, stone weapons, and many items used for house building.

Blacksmith

  • Armorsmith: Used for making heavy plate armor and horseshoes.
  • Weaponsmith: Used for making metal weapons and also has the ability to make horseshoes.

Diplomacy

Diplomacy is a new form of progression unique to Vanguard. Diplomacy is based off traditional trading card games. Diplomats play the game based off the pushes and pulls of typical conversation. Diplomats enter into a Parlay with members of a town and, depending on the level and gear of a player, are assigned a base amount of Dialogue points. The goal is to use abilities “Aggressive statement” and “truth be told” to influence an opponent's Dialogue points to 0. Diplomacy is typically used in cities and diplomats will parlay members of the city to create citywide buffs for crafter or adventurers therefore making people of those archetypes flock to the city as the buffs last. Diplomats also play a vital role in end game content like buying a guild hall and unlocking some places of power.

System Requirements

Minimum:

  • OS:Windows® 7, Windows® XP Service Pack 2 or Windows® Vista
  • Processor:Pentium® 4 equivalent or greater
  • Memory:1 GB RAM
  • Graphics:NVidia GeForce 7800/ATI Radeon X800 Pro
  • DirectX®:9.0c
  • Hard Drive:20 GB HD space
  • Sound:DirectX compatible Sound Card
  • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection

Recommended:

  • OS:Windows® 7, Windows® XP Service Pack 2 or Windows® Vista
  • Processor:Pentium® Core 2 Duo or greater
  • Memory:2 GB RAM
  • Graphics:NVidia GeForce 460 GTX/AMD Radeon HD 4850
  • DirectX®:9.0c
  • Hard Drive:20 GB HD space
  • Sound:DirectX compatible Sound Card
  • Other Requirements:Broadband Internet connection
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