Top 5 Free Realms irks

I’m starting to smell a whiff of Free Realms backlash on Twitter and, to a lesser extent, around the blogosphere. Maybe I’m just trailing the crowd…I was late to become enthralled with the game so maybe I’ll be grumpy about it later than everyone else, too.

Fact is, I’m still enjoying myself, for the most part. As is Angela.

But not all is perfect! (Is it ever?). So here is my list of things that really irk me:

1) Friends list is borked. Trying to add a real friend to my list is a challenge. They have to be online and on the same server as you, and even then it only works some of the time. I tried to add Angela as a friend and got nothing. Then she tried to add me, and it worked.

On the other hand, if a random person clicks on you and sends a Friend request and you say “NO THANKS” guess what happens? The person gets put on your Friends list. If you try to remove them, you get an error.

So I can’t get my REAL friends on my Friends List, but random strangers can get on against my wishes, and I can’t remove them.

Fix please. This is hugely irritating. [UPDATE: Partially fixed!]

2) I’ve got an inventory full of starter gear. I can’t sell it, I can’t trade it, I can’t delete it. I have no idea if inventory room is limited, but it is cluttered and I’d love to just delete this old gear I’ll never have a use for.

3) Hot bar for consumables is confusing. I can’t access it outside of a battle instance (at least, I can’t figure out how to). Nor can I use items directly out of my inventory. I made some food that is supposed to shrink me, which sounded fun. But I couldn’t figure a way to eat it without going into a battle instance to add it to my hotbar. And then it was greyed out since (I guess) it isn’t considered a combat item. I need to get small! How do I eat my magic food? (And oddly, it wasn’t a mushroom omelet.)

I was also apparently unable to add more than 1 kind of food to the hotbar. That might just be operator error.

4) Sorting inventory is cumbersome (see a common thread emerging here?). I’d like to be able to open “My Stuff” and then from there, sort/filter by Job. Instead, I have to open my Jobs Menu, pick the Job I want to filter by, and then look at equipment from in there. If I’m at a vendor and in my Brawler Job manifestation and want to sell some of my old Cook Job gear, I shouldn’t have to switch Jobs to filter that gear in order to determine what I’m using and what can be sold.

5) No ‘pop-up’ comparison of gear. You know how most MMOs, if you look at the stats of an item, the stats of your currently equipped item will pop up as well, so you can easily compare the two? No such luck in Free Realms.

So yeah, basically…fix the friends list. This is urgent, really. And streamline the inventory stuff. Doing those two things would eliminate my largest frustrations with the game.

Otherwise, I’m still having a lot of fun.

Anyone besides me think they should allow access to mini-games from a web browser? I’d like to spend a few minutes at work, at lunch, working on my mining, for instance (without firing up the full client).

This seems like an ideal way to bring an MMO to a mobile device.

5 thoughts on “Top 5 Free Realms irks

  1. Absolutely 100%! The friends functionality is also my #1 irritant. The other night my wife was asking me why she couldn’t see me, even though we were both online. You can’t even SEE your approved friends if you’re on different servers. What’s the point, since there’s no way to initiate cross-server communications in order to GET all of your friends on the same server. A Guidl Wars/Wizard 101 style shard-jumping option would be great here.

  2. Agreed on the minigames in-browser. The rest sounds like common sense too. Rookie devs?

  3. Rushed devs, I think. The beta period was awfully short. Maybe they had to get it out in Q2. I know I’m throwing a lot of half-assed, rushed projects at our customers because management insists we start drawing revenue from them in this quarter.

    Sadly because of this rush I’m in the midst of, I didn’t get a chance to do my followup 5 things I like about Free Realms post. 🙁 Maybe I can get it done this evening.

  4. Yeah, the whole “denying a friend puts them on your friends list anyway” is back. There are 3 people on my friends list, and I have no idea how they got there. Ninja friend and group requests FTL. SOE, “no” really does mean “no.” :p

    EDIT: It does now seem that you can actually remove unwanted friends, which is awesome. Will update on the dumb auto-accept bug as soon as someone I don’t know tries to friend me.

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