Firefall and Open World Failures

It’s rather funny that I’ve been back into Firefall again at the same time a fellow blogger, In An Age, is too. There is a decent sized patch that just got put in with a new dungeon as well as some new open world encounters but from all accounts it’s the same game with the same issues now.

I did end up finally getting to the level cap on my Dragonfly which just reminded me how much I hate the levelling g system they crammed into the game I used to enjoy. It’s just seems like a lot of grind mechanics now, and restricted types of grind rather than the more open system it used to be. Levels are everything in terms of power and the content you can do and to get that it’s basically just grinding out job boards that consist of incredibly simplistic mechanics (and still broken) and storytelling. It seems the majority of people in devils tusk aren’t doing these any more weather so I was mostly doing it alone.

I was a bit disappointed too that my weapon, the uber lvl 40 one that I crafted and then got changed over to the new system is now gone. Poof. The weapon I’ve got now is decent but I was looking forward to getting my old weapon firing again and the in reader power form it, small but noticeable. I thought to a craft a new one but I’d forgotten just how absolutely shit the whole crafting system now so that option is completely out of reach.

Before with durability and eventual item loss items were relatively easy to get amd craft but you had to keep doing things to maintain and replace. Without that it is now a system of an immense grind to attain the better stuff, a grind that would take a very, very, very long time. Like legendary weapons in gw2 long for a single piece. A heap of rather rare components from endless mob grinding. To research just the ability to craft those is excessive as well to the point were it seems no one crafts these things, at all. I used to like the crafting here but now I look at it and cringe.

A result now of both the levelling system and defunct crafting is that the world feels so much more stagnant now. Everyone is either grinding out jobs in there own little level based corner of the world or running instances. I feel like my awesome open world experience is now basically a large lobby, and that’s so sad.

Before you used the entirety of the world looking for and thumping materials. You were scanning the various places, exploring mountains and gully’s to chase those higher resources spawns and then finding them usually becoming a social experience as others saw the thump go down and came to join in or you had guildes come to get some. It was a huge social mechanic that used the entirety of the space effectively, it was a great exploration style activity I enjoyed and another activity useful for progress yet it’s all been invalidated to the point that all you see now is where you travel to and for quests, and for that you barely look.

They have changed the frequency and size of the events again and this is great. There does seem to be a lot more happening that let’s you explore and change up the regular questing style play and these events are fun. There is a new large scale invasion in the end zone and a new style of watchtower capture the chosen do that does break up the monotony and draws players towards them. I do miss this as the focus though, a whole game built around a less restrictive public event system that just worked, a public event system that was far more dynamic than gw2 with events happening just about anywhere at any time… Like a melding tornado, on top of a captured watchtower that’s getting raided by brontodons for some reason. It was just far more social, like you know… An mmo.

I can’t believe a game could get this right, have a great open world experience with options for progression and a more social environment and then go and fuck it all up because… I have no idea. Because of wow I guess. They thought they had to be the same as everyone else to be popular and profitable when all they actually had to do was release content. It’s like watching a horse race and when the leading horse is about to cross the finish line the rider decides to put a bullet in it’s head. Just so frustrating.

There are some changes that are ok. As a character you now have traits to choose from that are related to the Battleframes that incentivise levelling them again. This gives some decent reasons to get them without being needed but are enough to make even me go back to level a few frames. Out of the changes that happened though, I think that is the only one I actually like and think improved the game. Everything else either ruined or detracts form the previous experience.

Now it still seems like a fun game. The shooting does seem a little off, more so than it used to but I still enjoy jetting around and shooting things. The worst part is it just doesn’t feel as fun. The focus of gear and grinds as the main activity rather than just an addendum has killed that feeling for me. I wish it didn’t, Firefall had potential but unfortunately what they changed was all that was interesting about it. Now it’s another boring, dull grind that lacks polish and content.