Geplaatst: 30 mei
Basically a third- and (when scoping guns first-)person Borderlands-ish MMOFPS with a thus far smaller cast and perhaps less crazy and silly attitudes but providing seemingly just as much things to shoot and collect and some maybe interesting lore and story though I won't judge now because I'm not too far into it yet.
Areas are wide, cars can be spawned anytime, there are fixed hostile places to shoot mobs up at, main/side missions to pick up in the world and seemingly random events spawning all around. Indoor environments I haven't seen so far. There is very little direct interaction with the environment besides some gear vending machines, mission-specific buttons and terminals to use (like, no NPCs to talk to, no doors to open, no secret caves to discover) but the random events are aplenty and they can distract you and keep you busy all the time if you let them. They don't provide anything worth of attention story-/narration-wise, often it's "just" about you collecting some Alien flora, reviving/supporting NPCs in distress and generally shooting up hordes of enemies but thus far I'm not bored by it. It's fun to shoot stuff up and loot and level up and all.
The ambiance is generally good. Graphics are okay for a MMOG. I noticed a few nice music tracks, there are some reoccurring characters who are fully (and nicely) voiced having distinctive looks and their own but not necessarily too original personalities (so far: a kinda hard-boiled military guy, some sexy female Alien mercenary/hackwiz and some cocky senior researcher with what sounds like a German name - but thankfully he is fluent with his English so it's not 100% stereotype).
Immersion is sometimes broken a bit when random events/groups/fighting spots appear because they do so quick without much introduction and hesitation and without much respect to the player's location, just as they disappear into thin air the same way afterwards. If you stand still in the middle of some lost, lonely road it can very much happen that a minute later a car barricade spawns around you with allied NPCs defending it and hostiles swarming it. One event has you defend a weapon vending machine and even if you are browsing it's corresponding buying menu the whole assets will vanish a minute or so later regardless if you've finished your purchases or not. That can feel awkward.
Combat is real-time shooting. Third-person by default but some scoped guns let you go into first-person. Shoot, dodge, loot, shoot, dodge, loot. Loot contains ammo, cash and gear of various rarity stages. Revive or heal another player with a support gun maybe. Partying up is not required for these basics to work. XP is gained by finishing quests and killing stuff, every player apparently gets his own loot, certain random events encourage to fight together for their difficulty while others can be soloed with relative ease. Sometimes metaevents seem to spawn that have people drive across various places of the map in attempts to stop some hostile incursions or such. Especially multi-stage siege events require numerous players to fight together. There seem to be some other modes besides this open-world free-roam like PvP and special co-op which includes a matchmaking and seperate maps by the looks of it.
At a time you can have one active combat skill and two gear-related boosts (one affecting a small area around you and allies within, one only aiding you) with cooldowns. There is a skill grid to put level-up points into but that grid has you mostly acquire passive perks that boost your effectiveness with certain ways of combat rather than to give you active skills and thus the combat is initially dictated by what guns you use in which way. Some enemies have shields and armor, some guns and grenades have elemental attributes and there are regenerative shields you equip which play into this too. In the early phases fighting weaker enemies this doesn't play too much of a role but I expect this to get more important later on as I've already encountered some small bosses who are probably cracked easier when paying attention to these mechanics. There is something what felt like a class-selection to me in the beginning but it looks to me as if lines are rather blurry and you aren't forced as much to stick with one way of fighting.
Hostile AI is rather dumb. Enemies basically swarm you heads-up. They evade to the sides if you shoot, but I think I'm beginning to understand their patterns (at least those of the humanoid enemies). They have certain weak spots (humanoids mostly their heads, big bulky armored ones others which cripple them, critters elsewhere). They do have nice animations and effects and there is a quite some good lore-wise variety even in the earliest parts of the game: There are always some enemies attacking at range and some going for melee, but they have distinctive looks that make me want to know more about them and the background of their factions. One enemy pool for example consists of somewhat ghastly humanoids who, once killed, spawn futuristic revenant-like creatures that could have been inspired by Final Fantasy: Spirits Within.
Parts of the interface could feel a bit more intuitive. I'm particularly struggling a bit with the one that allows you to salvage and put mods into your guns because it requires too much back and forth I think. Others are pretty fine, and technically the game runs and looks well. Controls are easy and reduced to a minimum, the character creation is having some but not massive options. After an opening cutscene where you crash with a "Stratocarrier" onto what could be our earth or not (I haven't understood thus far; there is some terraforming talk but there the area map has locations named like earth-places such as "Silicon Valley") you are quickly dropped into the game and can get going on your own or follow the storyline.