Welcome to a comparably short preview. As you probably figured, this is because .hack//Quarantine is the fourth game in Cyber Connect2's RPG within an MMORPG series, and most of the gameplay/story points have been discussed and rediscussed, so nothing that outrageously details those aspects would be required here. For reference, the reader is pointed to the previews of .hack//Infection, .hack//Mutation, and .hack//Outbreak.
While the gameplay remains largely the same, this is the volume that .hack fans have been waiting for--the climactic ending to the four-part saga. Enemies will be confronted, strength will be tested, and questions will be answered in Quarantine. That said, this game is not at all intended for series newbies. While players that do not import previous data will be given a very brief story recap and collection of equipment/items, the inventory supplied is of mediocre quality and no 30-second mission briefing is going to get a player up to speed on the events that took place over 60 hours worth of gameplay. With the recent price drops of the first two volumes, interested players would be much better off to start from the beginning.
Things that are new to "The World" include the usual appearance of new wallpapers (among other such desktop goodies), a grab bag of new side quests, and new areas to discover. Kite and the comrades he has aquired will be taking out foes in that same action-like combat system that was used in the last three games, takng on the toughest enemies yet. Players may have noticed some stronger monsters in Outbreak, and Quarantine is set to make another AI climb, although not as drastic as the change found in Outbreak. Also, it is now possible for Kite and company to reach the max level of 99.
Unlike past installments, no new mini-game involving the beloved Gunties is present. The other Grunty games are still around, but nothing new was added in that department. Instead, the developers chose to add a side project called "Item Completion." This takes a large portion of the game to finish, as it entails the finding and registering of as many items as possible. Find everything needed, and you'll be rewarded with quite the desirable prize for your efforts.
Plotwise, fans can expect Volume 4 to take what was set forth by previous games and run with it. Having been in "The World" since February, everything has been building up to a conclusion that could disappoint fans if it turns out to be anything short of stunning.
When this game ships in December, .hackers will have been involved with the world for almost a year. With that in mind, it almost doesn't seem like the end is really upon us. Unreal as it may seem, the concluding adventure is almost here, and it's showing the potential to be the best of the bunch.