If you haven’t heard about Defiance yet, let me take a moment to tell you a few things you need to know. Defiance is the first ever video game and TV show taking place at the same time. Now, I can’t imagine the logistical nightmare this is from the development side, but from the users side, I’m stoked. The TV side of things is being handled by the SyFy Channel, known for great shows like Battle Star Galactica, so I’m pretty confidant that the show will be something worth checking out. The first episode comes out April 15 so you can bet I’ll be tuning in.
The video game is being developed by Trion Worlds, known for the Rift series MMO. Trion has really got something special on their hands here and what I’ve played so far of the game really has me excited for what they are going to do with the game over the coming years. That’s right, because this game is meshing up with the TV series, the game will track and even influence the TV show over the coming seasons. But enough about all that. What is Defiance?
Defiance is set in the year 2045, after the world was invaded by the Votans in 2013, a collection of alien species looking for a new home after the destruction of their own worlds. After peaceful negotiations break down between Votans and humans, a bitter conflict breaks out and what’s known as the “Pale Wars” change the Earth forever. Post conflict the world is virtually unrecognizable and the clashing races have to band together to survive.
Defiance is set on earth, in the year 2045 when the entire terrain is changed to do terraforming technology unleashed during the “Pale Wars.” The once familiar cities are now almost unrecognizable aside from landmarks that lay broken and ruined. Characters living in both St. Louis and San Francisco seek alliances and work together to survive the many obstacles the new world has unleashed.
Weapons and Vehicles
The world of Defiance brings with it alien technology that is customizable and quite varied in it’s usage. From common weapons like pistols and shotguns, to specialized grenade launchers and bio-magnetic weapons, there are plenty to collect, try out, and equip for victory. I spent several hours so far just working out the best combination for my human character. Weapons that play to a particular strategy and strength are readily available and fun to use.
The world is so massive that you even have a persistent vehicle to help you get from point A to point B. Just press a key and an ATV, car or dune buggy pops up and you’re off. Navigating the terrain is made easier with a built in nav system, boosts on the vehicles and an easy to access world map. I’ve played several hours now and haven’t even come close to exploring the whole world. It’s huge.
Trion has developed a third-person shooter that utilizes a multitude of weapons, shield mods, grenade options, skins, and other customizations. It’s a shooter first, an RPG second and an open world third. Stories tie into the TV show, the main stories of the game, and more side missions than you can shake a stick at. The action is quick paced, frenzied, very team based, and everywhere. You can’t drive more than 2 minutes before you find a road-side conflict between some mutants and marines, ready for you to jump in and help them in battle.
If all the above isn’t enough to convince you, now imagine all this with hundreds of people all around you doing the same thing. Coming across a road-side conflict just the other day I was joined by 4 other real-life people helping to battle back the mutants and save a group of soldiers. It was unreal! While the game has had some issues with servers in the first week, the developers are working around the clock to make the game a fun experience for all. An average MMO would have trouble in the first week getting servers going and making everything work. Trion is doing this on three platforms and making it work. Unbelievable! And so far every fix they do makes things a little bit smoother.
The massive world, filled with thousands of people, leveling characters up, shooting Hellbugs and mutants, driving like madmen, and all while blending story with the SyFy show. You’ve got to experience this. Take it from me. I’m ready to jump in a experience some more.
Defiance airs on the SyFy channel April 15th and the video game is out now on PS3, Xbox 360 and PC.