Fallen Earth takes place in the wastelands of the Grand Canyon in North America and as with any post-apocalyptic game, food, fuel and resources are scarce. The game begins in an instanced tutorial that is meant to teach you the basic game play elements, which is accomplishes for the most part, although it is a bit light.
Right off the bat I could feel just how rough the game was and it wasn’t ten mins later when I started to run into some bugs. First my character was stuck in mid air and I wan’t able to figure out how to get the game to reset him, so I had to logout to fix it. The next bug was encountered on my first death. When you die you are automatically cloned and start in a clone tube, so after I died I was cloned back to life in one of these tubes, however was completely stuck and couldn’t get out. After a few mins of jumping and moving around I was able to finally get out, so at least I saved myself another restart.
Aside from those two instances, I haven’t really encountered any major bugs, however you will constantly see NPCs floating in mid air or buried in the ground. This really should be fixed by now, there’s no excuse to see that four months into a game’s release.
For those of you unaware, Fallen Earth is a FPS/RPG hybrid. It takes leveling and statistic elements of RPGs and combines it with an FPS style of combat. My problem is that if I’m playing an FPS I want it to feel like one. Fallen Earth does not feel like a normal FPS. Aiming is still based on your stats so it doesn’t really matter if you’re dead on with your shots, if your skills are low you’re still most likely going to miss your target. Fallen Earth feels like they took an RPG and incorporated a FPS style of combat, when it should of been the other way around.
Once you complete the instanced tutorial, you begin your adventure in a small intro town that will introduce you to other game elements such as crafting, mutation skills, attributes, etc. I was happy to learn that you can get your mount at level two and didn’t have to walk around for the first 20 hrs like most of todays MMOs have you do. You start off with a horse, but there are other types of transportation available, motorcycles, jeeps, quads to name a few and each has their own storage capacities that can be used to store weapons, armor or other items. Unlike most MMOs, your mount does not go with you when you die nor does it disappear when you get off. Where ever you leave it, that’s where it will be.
Like most MMOs, leveling your character is a major part of the game. With Fallen Earth it’s no different, however you will find that leveling your character is much slower than most other MMORPGs, especially early on. As you level you are given attribute points that you can use to build up certain skills and mutation. I believe you are given enough points to max our 3 different skills by the time you reach the max level.
The questing system is what you would find in any other MMO game. You have your fetch quests, kill 10 whatever quests, talk to this person, gather this, etc. The biggest issue with the questing system is you can only have one quest marker show up on your map at a time. So if there are two quests in the same location, you’d never know about it and would have to make two separate trips out to that location. You can of course scroll though your entire quest list to see where the markers are, however that is extremely annoying to do and if your in a bad spot can’t do it.
I’m not sure if that was done by design or not, but if you’re going to give the player tons of boring quests to do, at least allow us to see where they are all at once.
Once you have completed the quests in the intro town, about 20 or so, you should be around lev 5 and can now move on to the first real location. Again this was not a good first experience for me. When I entered the first major town, there were so many people that I completely lagged out. I dropped my graphics to the lowest levels and was still only getting about 5 frames per second. After about 15-20 mins of trying to gather some quests, I decided to quit for the day and try again at a different time. I’m happy to say the next time I logged in I didn’t experience the same issue and was able to finish collecting quests.
Aside from the normal everyday quest, there are PvP zones setup around Fallen Earth that are open combat areas. As you approach these areas you’ll get a warning message that says you are approaching a PvP zone and another once you enter the zone. Once inside you can partake in PvP combat as you would with any other MMORPG. There is no looting so you don’t need to worry about your stuff being stolen if you die.
Recently there was a graphical update and I did notice a better looking game afterwards, which was nice, but in the end Fallen Earth did not win me over. After this review I won’t be going back to the game. Aside from being extremely rough around the edges, the FPS aspect of the game wasn’t quite what I was looking for. The questing system seemed like your generic run of the mill quest grinding and I felt there wasn’t enough of a storyline to keep me interested.