One thing that sets Firefall apart from other MMOs is its trying to be a shooter first and an RPG second. Usually it’s the other way around. It’s because of this there’s a strong PvP element. For me personally, I have little interest in this, but if you are/were a fan of the Tribes series of games, you should feel at home here.
It’s clear that Firefall is still in beta form, I hit numerous bugs during my playtime with the game. There’s also some weird co-op quirks - like the inability to trade items between players. At times I felt a bit lost within the game world, and while everything feels very “living and breathing,” the central narrative feels pretty weak.
That’s not to say there aren’t some good concepts here. I really like the interface which is completely customizable, and the quick access to dozens of menus via the NavWheel is incredibly slick. The combat and shooting feels great, the graphics are mostly impressive, and the music - oh man the music - I hope they release a soundtrack.
Free to Play games are changing the industry in a lot of ways. Firefall is a good example of what a top tier shooter could do if it was F2P. Not only are F2P games changing where we spend our time gaming, but as a reviewer, it changes how and why we “review” something. These games are incredibly dynamic with large life spans and content that changes daily. If you’re reading these impressions three months from now they may be out of date already.
For the most part I think Red 5 Studios has a solid PvE base in their game with some really fun things to do with friends. You’ll definitely need to work together to progress and the fact that there’s no “buy in” other than a few hours of your time makes it a no brainer for trying. Firefall may be and have been in some form of “beta” for 2 years now, but someday they’ll drop that flag. Until then, does it really matter if you’re having fun?