Firefall

First, big thanks to Werit for pointing out this game to me when we were chatting. Firefall is a game being created by Red 5 studios, and from what I’ve seen so far, my interest is piqued. As usual, its heavy sci-fi influence instantly takes a hold of me, and the fact that they have a tool called a “thumper” and that calls bugs hits all the right trigger spots for my recent re-reading of the Dune series. It’s almost as if someone took a peek into my head and said, “Hey, how can plant a hook in this-here grey matter?”.  The two main videos on the front page of the website are great to watch, the first because it’s just an amazing cinematic, and the second because it gives you consistent game footage with commentary from the developers.

Story-wise, it seems like a pretty cut/dry sci-fi, end of the world, resistance fighting story. It doesn’t make it any less interesting, or intriguing, but I do expect it to follow some of the expected formulaic archetypes of the story. They hinted at some twists and turns to the story, and I’m curious about how those may pan out, but overall, the lore is nothing more than a backdrop for me to play in at this point.

Visually, the game is very attractive. It uses the cell-shaded approach that we should all be familiar with by now from seeing it used heavily in games like Champion’s Online (going F2P), and single-player titles like Borderlands. Additionally, everything is bright, shiny, and clean, which seems to harken strongly towards the studios roots at Blizzard. Even the location called “The Dredge”, which is down beautifully, still has an aesthetic of polish about it. It’s a sense that I was able to shake while watching the whole video. I don’t say this to detract from what the game is, merely to point out a consistency of implementation.

Gameplay-wise, we know very little. What is heartening, is that they want this to be a shooter “first-and-foremost”. It uses shooter mechanics and physics, and their working hard to have it play as such, with an emphasis on the run-and-gun playstyle of the genre. So, while that may be disheartening to MMO fans who see a persistent world and think “Planetside 2.0!”, to fans of shooters, they’ll be encouraged to know that the things that make their game of choice stand should be remaining. That’s not to say that the game will be without MMO tropes, because they want this to be something played on a much bigger scale than current FPS’s (BFBC2 and MW2), but still only take the pieces that fit and make sense for fun.

The price model is probably the biggest surprise to me: it’s a free-to-play game, and they intend to make all their money on micro-transactions. Usually, that information is enough to turn me off faster than kick to the jimmy, but for some odd reason, I don’t seem troubled by it. Maybe it’s because the game isn’t an MMO. Hell, I don’t pay a monthly fee to play my BFBC2, and I love the hell out of that game, so why should this be any different? It’s interesting to read the reactions of the internet community out there, in regards to the games classification, because they seem to desperately need to categorize the game and fit it into their mental box. From what I can tell, the game is taking a different look at how a genre is played, and pulling from other’s to make the best game they can.

It should be interesting, and I know I’ll be checking it out when it releases…

At the end of 2011.

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About Shadow
Making serious business out of internet spaceships.

2 Responses to Firefall

  1. Sarigs says:

    Not seen that one before, looks pretty badass from for a first view! Thanks for the heads up!

  2. Tastedbigworm/Gauge says:

    I’ve had this one on my Radar since it’s announcement several months ago. It will be F2P right out of the gate. One of the main things that caught my attention was the huge open world. I’m not a huge fan of the F2P model but I can live with it. Especially if the game is designed that way from the start.

    The MMO genre is on the verge of being over-saturated. There are some quality MMOs out there now and more on the way. I gladly give my money to Mythic for WAR and could justify another MMO sub if it really got in my head. Honestly, money is not the issue I just don’t have the time to play everything I want so it’s more of a personal gripe I guess.

    Another MMO I will sub to is DCUO. I am in the closed beta and I went in with very low expectations even though I am a DC comics fan. I can’t say too much but after one weekend of play I pre-ordered the Collector’s Edition.

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