Published on August 22nd, 2011 | by Bob0
>Global Agenda as Free-to-Play: First Impressions
>Global Agenda is a sci-fi MMO based on the Unreal 3 engine. It was released last year, but after several subscription models it recently became free to play, with some micro-transactions. The game was crafted by Hi-Rez Studios, who are also making the upcoming Tribes: Ascend. I wanted to see what it was like to play a newer game by the company. Also, it’s free. Keep in mind, this is a first impression, not a full review. This is an MMO with plenty of content, and in the hour or so I played, I haven’t experienced everything.
First of all, I had to go make an account on their website. This was pretty painless, it also allowed me to apply for the Tribes: Ascend beta at the end. You can pay to do the Elite Agent pack ($15), which doubles your XP and rewards forever. I believe you can upgrade to this whenever you want. There are other micro-transactions which are there for appearance sake a lot of the time, much like TF2. I declined the Elite pack as I hadn’t touched the game yet. After signing up, I logged in and went to character creation. The menus are all pretty straight forward and there was nothing too confusing about them. Even someone new to the MMO genre won’t be overwhelmed.
As you can see (click to enlarge) there are 4 class types. Robotics, which can deploy sentries and use other augments to help them out. There is Recon, which is a melee or sniper finesse class. There is also the Assault class, which looks to be heavy weapons. The medic, which I chose, is the healer class.
As soon as you enter the game you are alone in a stasis tank in a Commonwealth lab. The Commonwealth is the overarching, oppressive government. Some agents from one of the resistance factions come to help free you. After this cut-scene you control you character while trying to escape the Commonwealth facility.
The game is in third-person perspective, but the controls are standard WSAD and other FPS conventions. Eventually you get fitted with a jet-pack which is where the tribes/Unreal influence begins to creep on. You have a health bar, and a power bar. The power bar is important because it powers everything, guns, jet pack, shields. It regenerates quickly, but you definitely need to keep it in mind at all times. Mastering the 3d movement with the jet-pack is key to this game. It is also extremely fun. The controls aren’t at all clunky, I found them very smooth and responsive.