PvE in Global Agenda is not the insanity of the PvP. Teams are much smaller here, focusing on the 5 man group instead of the large deathmatch teams. At first glance, one would think that their enemy would be all of the androids toting guns that are patrolling the complex in front of you. However, after playing for a few minutes, you'll quickly realize that your enemy is the ticking clock up in the corner.
All PvE missions are timed, forcing you to play quickly and efficiently as a team. Here, I was surprised to find that the same skills I was just using in PvP translate very well to a PvE style of gameplay. The Assault players take on the role of tanks, Recons take over the DPS slots, Medics turn into the proverbial priests, and Robotics players take on the roles of support and crowd control.
The androids that stand in front of you vary between kinda dumb and scary smart. Sometimes they'll crouch and fire on you in the open, but more often they'll quickly take cover behind scenery and use it to their advantage. During my run, we had an android climb atop a tower of crates and actually use his crouch to pop up and down, firing on us from his high altitude. Other units include actual humans who fight against you (who are like small mini-bosses) and security drones that sound alarms when they scan you, which brings out many, many more androids.
Missions contain checkpoints -- each of which are guarded by bosses who pretty much throw everything in the kitchen sink at you. Rockets, android spawns, machine guns, bombs, you name it. Your team needs to be able to play together because bosses will rip loose cannons apart. If you pass a checkpoint, you're awarded with extra time and access to the next area in the level.
Death is also something to take into consideration as well. The game doesn't shut you down for dying in a battle, but it does penalize you by removing mission bonuses. If you complete the mission with no deaths on the team, you're rewarded with special bonuses at the end. Each time you die, a life is removed from the bonus calculation until you just simply run out of any extra rewards. You'll still be rewarded for completing the mission, of course, but flawless victories give more perks than dying every 30 feet.
The transition from PvP to PvE is close to seamless. PvE encounters teach you the fundamentals of your class while still being loads of fun and a great team building exercise. The PvE's focus on team play is a great counterpart and learning experience to the focus on teams in PvP situations, letting new players learn the ropes without being humiliated by more experienced troops and still gaining bouses for their characters.
Sign us up, sir!
Global Agenda was easily the game of the show at GameX, hands down. Its polished gameplay (even in beta) combined with a great sense of fast-paced fun kept a constant stream of people sitting down and learning the ropes. Some people even came back for second or third matches, eager to try out a new class or just play the game more.
I spy a fun game. This deeper look into Global Agenda makes me more excited to see exactly what the game has to offer at launch. Both PvP and PvE are lots of fun, easy to get into, and simultaneously connected and unique experiences. If you're a Guild Wars junkie, a TF2 trooper, a Borderlands resident, a Tribes soldier, or a PlanetSide refugee, you're going to find things to love.