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E3 2011: Defiance Impressions

Garrett Fuller Posted:
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Our first appointment at E3 for MMORPG.com was with Trion and SyFy Channel’s Defiance MMO. For starters Defiance crosses all three platforms so the game will be playable on PS3, XBOX and PC. The game plays as a third person shooter with MMO progression in a persistent world. Defiance definitely sets the standard for an MMO that combines so many amazing elements it is exciting to watch the game grow from this early stage.

First and foremost the world of Defiance is set on Earth after an alien invasion. The aliens tried to terra form the planet for realizing that the humans where already there. So the game world mixes real locations with lush new alien plant life to create a futuristic visual landscape. Players enter this world with various advanced technology. Armored warriors with loads of different weapons walk the landscapes looking to fight aliens and find new technologies.

Players can customize their armor and weapons but also their skill sets. The skills a player chooses help to focus their battlefield roles. The skills we watched in use were stealth modes and decoys for players who like sneaking around. Or power ups for tank focused characters to boost their strength to take on larger targets. In the end we were only shown a small set of skills that will be available to players. The teleportation skill was amazing and worked great in the group battle.

Defiance will be a persistent world. Thousands of players will be on the servers at once and people will be able to jump in and out of the game like a normal MMO. There is a mission story line which players can go through solo. Then there is also group play factored into it. They are planning very large dynamic events, similar to what we have seen in RIFT. Interlacing all of this game play with the TV show is the tricky part. Right now the demonstration really showed off the game more than the show. There are major plans to incorporate lots of elements of the show within the game as they build up.

Area Missions will work for groups similar to public quests in other MMOs. The Area missions moved very fluidly and worked well. The game play was intense and players were throwing down suppressing fire while others ran in to do the dirty work. The Ark Fall mission we watched had the players fighting aliens for the terra forming technology that dropped. Players not only had to fight the aliens but once the pod opened it launches a huge boss, the team then has to battle the boss and hopefully get the technology. Overall the presentation for the Area Mission was very impressive. The demo was shown on two screens with a PS3 and Xbox as well as players on PCs back at the studio.

The Q&A session after the demo was short mostly because they cannot reveal much at this time. They did mention PvP and explained that the team was taking it very seriously but could not give details on it yet. They did say that customizing weapons and armor is a major part of the game.  Some questions came in about the SyFy show tie in and right now they are working on linking characters from the show into the game. There is also a chance that players will be mentioned on the show as well.

Defiance looks incredibly impressive and truly pushes the next generation MMO. Trion has done a great job in building a world and game that fans of MMOs, shooters, and science fiction will all enjoy. We will continue coverage on Defiance as the game shows us more. For now enjoy the trailer and first looks at the game. There is much more to come. 


Garrett Fuller

Garrett Fuller / Garrett Fuller has been playing MMOs since 1997 and writing about them since 2005. He joined MMORPG.com has a volunteer writer and now handles Industry Relations for the website. He has been gaming since 1979 when his cousin showed him a copy of Dungeons and Dragons. When not spending time with his family, Garrett also Larps and plays Airsoft in his spare time.