Vanguard - Review @ Eurogamer
Calling it an "unfinished symphony", Eurogamer has given Vanguard the relatively low score of 6/10 in their review. Citing some excellent innovations (diplomacy) but bugs, poor writing and "arrogant" design, here's a snip:
In Vanguard, the storylines of the various races, continents and factions are spread over the world more thinly than a condom over a blue whale. The "lore" of the game (the fantasy world which you uncover) feels like an amateur Sunday effort; it's patchy, hackneyed and badly written. And while the diplomacy system makes the delivery of the whole thing vastly more interesting, there's a constant feeling that diplomacy gameplay is just filling in the cracks for a pretty awful back-story. Comparisons with WOW - or indeed with many other RPGs - are inevitable, and unkind; and while many players probably won't care, there are a great many who want the worlds they explore to be more than just a lot of pretty pixels. The lack of rich lore in Vanguard is a black mark, and feels like a throwback to the Bad Old Days.