• Publisher: Funcom
  • Release Date: Sep 8, 2003

Generally favorable reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. 100
    What sets this game apart from every other is the obscene amount of tweakage you can do to your character. [Dec 2003, p.70]
  2. Those who can embrace the technology aspects, can invest the time to immerse themselves in the jargon and lore will find an evolving game with depth and challenge. Throw in incredible environments, an amazing soundtrack and you have a winner.
  3. The entire gaming experience, other than a few minor grammatical issues in conversations with NPCs and the necessary huge patch downloads, was as close to flawless as I’ve seen.
  4. Changing from the ugly duckling of yesteryear, to 2003's beautiful white swan, Anarchy Online is not the same 'ol chaos you may remember.
  5. 90
    Shadowlands is like a love letter from Funcom to its fans. It is an example of how an MMO can grow and change, becoming richer without alienating new players or neglecting the hardcore fans who've stayed with it all along.
  6. 90
    Upgraded graphics, some of the best ambient sounds in the business, a deep story, new additions for character customization as well as two new professions, tons of new monsters, items and zones and Funcom's above par customer service makes this game a must buy for anyone even remotely interested in MMO's.
  7. This expansion pack adds new races, a new story, new missions and side quests, new weapons and armor, Perks and a totally overhauled engine with graphics that have to be seen to be believed... So incredible are the environments that even the wastelands look fantastic.
  8. 88
    There is just so much to see and do that even the most established players will still be making discoveries for months to come.
  9. While it's still extremely complicated, Shadowlands adds a tremendous amount of intriguing new content that helps make Anarchy Online much more worthwhile.
  10. And did I mention massive? The Shadowlands expansion introduces a whole new quasi-metaphysical world to explore, along with two extra professions. [Jan 2004, p.107]
  11. The interesting cyberpunk motif expanded into a whole new set of wondrous lands easily lends itself to hours of fun play, while the multiplayer experience lets gamers enjoy the title with others and offers a sense of satisfaction unseen in other offerings.
  12. 80
    An improvement on the original, and the new environments add a considerable level of depth. Fans of the series will also appreciate the tweaks to the character development system, like the two new classes and special abilities.
  13. Shadowlands injects into the game a quadruple dose of what it most desperately needed: namely, compelling gameplay content. [Feb 2004, p.91]
  14. This is one of the few science fiction themed games on the MMORPG genre and worth playing for experienced gamers who are looking for a break from fantasy games. Casual gamers should consider their options carefully.
  15. The geography is often stunning and shows a flair for the otherworldly that puts the more expensive landscapes of "Star Wars Galaxies" to shame. [Jan 2004, p.68]
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 19 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 6
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 6
  3. Negative: 0 out of 6
  1. Aug 22, 2013
    Amazing huge world, going strong for over a decade.

    New Graphic overhaul I understand with the new Dreamworld Game engine cant wait to see
    this game with a makeover. Full Review »
  2. Jay
    Dec 4, 2003
    Funcom has really cleaned things up since AO launched. Customer service is exceptional, gameplay is great - The playerbase is amazing. Notum Wars and Shadowlands have added new and exciting content to this truly magnificent game. Full Review »
  3. NinaS.
    Sep 26, 2003
    Anarchy Online has had me captivated for close to two years and Shadowlands is a fantastic expansionpack, offering a huge new world and tons of new things to do. The graphics and sound is awesome as well! Full Review »