RF Online - Chip Wars
MMORPG.com's new RF Online Correspondent Jeff S writes this overview of the Chip War feature in the sci-fi game.
Running through the minefield with explosions all around. Accretian cyborgs falling to their knees as sharp arrows puncture their metal skulls. Ear-splitting battle-cries of enraged Cora elves fighting tooth and nail with a giant MAU firing off bullet after bullet. Strafing left and right, dodging the dead allies and getting closer to the chip.
A huge noise over head as a stocky Bellato human looks up to see a huge nuclear bomb fly overhead. He ducks down, the massive explosion tearing apart the bodies of all allies on his radar. He scrambles to his feet, and begins running while switching on his jetpack. His feet lift off the ground, and the brave warrior speeds onwards to his destination faster, flying past the dead Bellato comrades on the ground - and so close to the Cora's control center.
A huge, thrashing mass of elves and their summoned beasts clashing with the cyborgs becomes clear up ahead. The human jumps into the battle, brushing away all the Cora guards as if he were merely swatting flies, watching them fall to the ground after just one powerful hit. The control center now right in front of him, he starts to slash at it with all his might, trying to break through the thick glass to capture the ultimate prize, the control chip.
With the Cora still pounding their way through the field of Accretians behind him, the Bellato warrior hears a voice in his head as he glances around to check his surroundings - "WATCH OUT!" "Gotcha." He replies into his headset on Vent, as his guild leader tells him to dodge the next wave of the Cora attack.
An interesting concept I have always liked about RF [Rising Force] Online is the aspect of Chip Wars. It’s a huge, exhilarating three-pronged battle; three races, three chips, one map (the Crag Mine: a mining area appropriated into a battlefield whenever it is time for war) and a massive power struggle for complete domination. A battle royale for mining rights in the most sought-after area; whoever can defeat the other races' chips first and bring it to the center map will find the guardian Holystone Keeper waiting with their reward. Like a huge, futuristic, extremely violent variation on Capture the Flag, with at least 200, if not many more, people playing constantly. Working together with your race to destroy the oppositions' control centres, capture their chips and get away with them to the middle of the map within a time limit.
The incentive to win the Chip War, besides bragging rights of course, is to acquire a very effective buff Victorious Vigor and to avoid a debuff, Car of Defeat which last until the next Chip War, and exclusive access of the winning race to the center map area of the Crag Mine, protected by a huge guardian monster (so huge, in fact, that it barely fits on a normal sized monitor) called the Holystone Keeper (often shortened to HSK). The mining speed in the center map is many times faster than anywhere else in the Crag Mine, and with the protection of the Holystone Keeper, any hostile race that attempts to enter will be swiftly killed, allowing the victors to mine as they please, completely safe and uninterrupted.
Of course, not just anyone of the victorious race may mine in the center area only those who can prove their contribution to the war will be able to. To do this, a player must complete a special Chip War quest, available only while the war is in progress. To complete the quest and gain full mining access, players must acquire a oly Metal Scanner an item dropped by any opposing race chip guards (NPCs/monsters with the appearance of the race of the chip they guard). This scanner must be obtained and the quest completed before the Chip War timer ends.
So why is gaining access to the center mine such a big deal anyway? Well, you see, mining is very important to a race economy, as valuable crafting and upgrading resources can be obtained from processing the mined ore. Precious metals that can be obtained from the ore are used for crafting armor and weapons, as well as highly sought-after alics and gems, which can be used to one upgrade armor and weapons to godly proportions. This in turn helps races to win more Chip Wars and gain domination of other shared maps, making the victorious race more and more powerful.
The chip protective glass finally breaks! Our human protagionist reaches in with one shaking hand, through shards of glass tearing his armor, and closes his fist tightly around the chip. ora down! Chip to HSK! Charge! The blue [Race] text reads. A flurry of triumphant responses flood the chatbox, and over his headset joins in with the cheers of enthusiasm but the battle is not over yet. Once more he begins to glide on his jetpack, this time alongside a swarming mass of his own race, the Archon leading the way to the HolyStone Keeper.
Their path is not an easy one. The human horde is now met by the combined forces of elves and cyborgs, summoned beasts and steel claws ripping at their ranks. The Bellato see comrades falling left and right, eyes closed but mouths open in silent screams. Through the bullet shells and shrapnel of war, the chip bearer and survivors push onwards under the guidance of the Archon, determined to take the win for their race.
One of the most important roles in a Chip War is the race leader, the Archon. The Archon’s role is to coordinate attacks and defense, and strategize as effectively as possible for swift victory. With the race's Archon by their side, a race also gains a great power. The Archon has the ability to release nuclear warheads; a massive bomb which completely annihilates any other races within range. However, the Archon alone is not enough; for a race to come out of a Chip War victorious, communication is a big factor. Players reporting enemy ambushes, nuclear warheads, attack waves and vulnerable points to assist the Archon are essential.
To support the Archon in battle, or act as replacements in the Archon’s absence, are the race’s Councils, made up of two Consuls (who are able to release nuclear warheads if given them by the Archon), two Strike Team members, two Defense Team members and two Support Team members. When the Archon is absent, Chip Wars can be utter chaos with just about anyone trying to take over the role and organize the fight. This Council of eight players helps to ensure that there is always someone online to coordinate the troops and give each race a fighting chance.
Another important role in a Chip War is that of the guild master. Large, well run guilds may be used as stand-alone military units, each with a specific purpose and the guild master as the unit leader. Guild masters summon their members to group and await the Archon orders, and are also looked to my members for guidance and orders in operations assigned by the Archon or Council. A guild that groups and regroups together, looking out for and giving advice to one another in a Chip War is a force to be reckoned with.
Lastly, but surely not least, the role of the individual soldier. The loyal fighter who trusts and listens to his superiors, follows the orders given, and looks out for his fellow mercenaries. The support and power of each individual always makes a difference to the outcome of the Chip War. The players who respawn immediately after death and rush back straight into the fray, brandishing ever-die attitudes and weapons at the ready determined, noble warriors ready to with unrelenting effort for their race. Whatever reason they have to fight, be it glory or greed, these soldiers are the ones who win or lose the war.
,i>The few remaining survivors, grouped around our hero, and the bearer of the chip, pour down the mine tunnel, almost at the Holystone Keeper. In hot pursuit are the two other races, netting, sniping, picking them off one by one. Suddenly, a huge explosion echoes throughout the tunnel a nuke? No, a Goliath MAU blown up by the persistent opposition! hat gotta hurt, mutters the chip bearer, ducking as shards of metal fly through the air, nearly decapitating him.
They burst out into the open Holystone Keeper area. The chip bearer looks at the Archon o, we don have much time. I l hold them off. He turns off his jetpack and walks towards the great guardian, quivering as he feels the awesome energy it exerts. The small warrior kneels down and bows before the Keeper, holding up the chip as the offering for its protection. As he sneaks a glance upwards, he sees the Holystone Keeper raise a great fist, and as the Cora and Accretians swarm into the area, hears a great roar as they keel over in synchronization.
The battle has been won, and the war is over or the next six hours, anyway.