Understanding this, and preparing for little or no roleplay (RP? lol), I logged into Face of Mankind
after making my character. You have to choose from one of 8 factions, and to be honest I went for the lamest faction I could think of. The Colonization and Mining Guild was so lame sounding that it was attractive. My character would forge his destiny through thick red clouds of dust, darn it! He would fight his way up the ladder! Little did I know that everyone in the game
would remind me of how much the faction bit, and how much the players in the faction would simultaneously bite and rule at the same time. Unfortunately, it was my understanding that I would not be able to change factions unless I paid for a premium account.
The first fellow Miner I met told me to follow him. I did, and I have to admit that his urgency was exciting. He seemed to be pulling me out of a firefight, hopefully to educate me a bit (the game makes you work to find basic information, while calling it a "learning curve.") Soon, though, he pulled me out of the tutorial city and into our faction homebase. He told me then to "Get teamspeak." And then to "Get on
teamspeak." I looked for the emote to signal "Hold on there, buddy" but instead stared blankly ahead.
Every Miner who recognized me as a newbie seemed to welcome me while barking orders at me. The faction you reside in has a very steep ladder of command to climb, and I was on the very bottom rung. I literally had someone tell me to "GET ON VENT" while handing me new armor and ammo. Another friendly faction member told me that I was a "----ing NOOB" while he gave me advice on where to find the tutorials. Later, when prodding for some information, a faction-mate told me to ask the boss. The boss then chimed in with: "I command you all to find me and gang rape me."
"In fact, the newbie tutorials were the best part of my week. They felt immersive and a little spooky."
At this point I'd learned how to craft, which consists of looking up at the screen in between Tweeting
on your iPhone to make sure that no one is coming to kill you. It is actually a very neat system that makes you decide among speed, quality and cost, but the looming presence of PvP meant that you had to essentially babysit your PC while the ore chinked by. The systems do go deeper, I know that much. You mine basic materials, turn them into other materials, and craft items from those. I know it sounds vague, and that's because it is. Between figuring out the basics and literally hoping to find at least one other player to shoot at
, I didn't dedicate much time to crafting.
While there are many complaints about the graphics, I found them decent enough to be a good setting for exploring. One of the few planets I visited is frequented by typical insect monsters that, due to my noobness or lack of decent weaponry, killed me in three seconds. Luckily before I died I did
notice how nice the scenery was.
The quests were actually pretty interesting, some consisting of literally scouting areas for XP and faction points. I also enjoyed some of the basic tutorial missions that walked me through the basics of gameplay. In fact, the (recently implemented) newbie tutorials were the best part of my week. They felt immersive and a little spooky. When I tried to ask about some of the solo-friendly quests, I was told that I was being a leech and to avoid doing them. Then I watched as one of the leaders of the faction used his ability to decide which quests can be done, exchanging the "F---ing eco missions" for group combat. Again, I was being told what to do.
To sum up, the game might be for you if you are into squad warfare, factional combat or any other sort of PvP. If you like your local chat saucy and your groups forced then, again, this might be for you. If you were a fan of Tribes
or of Planetside
you might enjoy this game. But if you are looking for a deeper experience with a playerbase that wants to actually use the potentially fantastic tools that the game world provides, look elsewhere. Face of Mankind
is your run-of-the-mill MMOFPS with your run-of-the-mill playerbase. You will die a lot, you will slowly learn bits of the game, and you will be told to GET ON VENT several hundred times.
The next game we are going to be looking at will be Earth Eternal
. While I have already played this, it will be interesting to see how others experience it. My main character is Beau Turkey, a Clockwork knight. We will meet on Tuesday and Friday night, at 8 PM Central Time, USA.
Now go log in!