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Monday, September 29, 2014

The Repopulation - Screenshots and Initial Thoughts

[gallery type="rectangular" link="file" ids="3786,3789,3791,3787,3792,3788,3790"]

The Repopulation is a crowd sourced upcoming free to play (F2P) Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG.) Here is what the game is about in the developer's, Above and Beyond Technologies, own words.

The Repopulation is a Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game. The action takes place on the planet Rhyldan, with the only known remaining human population fighting for their very existence. The indigenous life forms did not meet their colonization efforts with open arms. Worse yet, humans have managed to splinter themselves into warring factions.

It is a sandbox oriented MMORPG with an eye on innovation. Rather than forcing players down preset paths they are instead allowed to walk the path which they enjoy the most. With a variety of combat oriented and non-combat activities to pursue, we believe we’ve created a game that can stand the test of time.


I joined the alpha testing earlier this year because the skill system intrigued me. I will be writing more about that later as it deserves a post of its own. But I will confirm that when they say it doesn't force people down preset paths, they mean it. At first it was a little too open... as in, "what the hell do I do now?" too open. But you know, you can't complain about choice. And having the ability, and opportunity, to pursue what you want and ignore the rest, and then flip-flop it all if you change your mind, is rather nice. The only thing that slows you down is money, and since time is money, you can't do everything immediately. Some planning, and patience, is still required. And because of the need for money, and a desire to get some quickly, I found myself resorting to hunting creatures and harvesting their meat, organs and DNA for cash. Oh, did I not mention this is a Sci Fi MMORPG, with advanced technologies and all that? I'm sorry. :P If you want to be a character who trains and genetically modifies native animals to serve humanity go for it. Or you can become a weapons manufacturer. Or specialize even more and produce fittings that make devices more effective in specific ways. More on that later as well.

Overall the combat system in The Repopulation is intuitive, but it does take some getting used to. In The Repopulation, you can play it in standard MMORPG third person view, or you can change it to first person shooter or even third person shooter mode - what the developer calls Action Mode. Action Mode is not processed the way a first person shooter would be. It's all done client side so as to not give anyone an unfair advantage. That doesn't seem to be all that big a deal, and it isn't. That is until you get into combat and find one mode suits you more than the others. I find I prefer third person action mode. It's easier for me to aim and click than to select abilities and click. In Action Mode, you click on the creature you want to shoot. But there is also a target reticle. You can place it anywhere on the creature you think it'll do the most good. If you've got the right gear, you can even zoom in for a targeting assist. And the damage is applied where the reticle lands, for the most part. But that's Action Mode. Traditional RPG mode is different, with a different sequence of events needed to make it all work. It can be a bit confusing, but there's that choice dilemma again. ;-)

As for being an MMORPG, The Repopulation seems to have what it takes from a game perspective. It has pets. It's has mounts, whether they be animal or vehicle. It has vanity items such as fancified (and unique?) suits of armor. It has titles both prefix and suffix.  It has player housing. In fact, it has provisions for allowing players to break away from the two main factions and set up their own independent nations, replete with towns and garrisons - player garrisons. Will humanity never learn? :/ This adds an interesting dimension to the game I've only seen in EVE Online. The encouragement of player politics. And as in all such things, war is the final negotiating tool is it not? I may not participate in this as it's not my cup of tea, and the game does not force PvP on everyone, but I am looking very forward to profiting from it. :twisted:

On the down side, the game still has a way to go before it is a final product. It can get super laggy for no apparent reason. There are still obvious graphical defects in the game as you'll see in the gallery of screenshots below. The interface seems to glitch at times switching from RPG to Active Mode, and I've got the re-clone count to prove it! I've no doubt there are balancing issues in need of addressing as well. But the games isn't even in beta testing yet, and it's nearly as far along as Landmark, the other game for which I'm a founder. I'm very pleased with the progress Above and Beyond Technologies has made over the summer, and I am confident the game will be successful with its current F2P model. I know I continue to be interested in it, and I can't say that for all the MMOs I'm currently playing. Of course, time will tell on that score. And I will keep you updated to be sure. If you are interested in the game at all, visit the web site for all the details. Free to play is a good price. Hope to see you soon in Freedomtown!

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