Global Agenda Gets “Open Zone”, Other Stuff

Shooty persistent-world type game Global Agenda has undergone a bunch of changes since launch, the biggest of those having just gone live within the game today. These include the “Open Zone” – which is a wide-open PvE space that you can go off and do missions in, a bit like a traditional MMO- and also, more significantly, the fact that there is no longer any fee to play. Buy it, and you got it, Guild Wars style. Which is good. The new patch also adds in 10-man raids, in which you defend the city against invaders. It’s interesting to see the PvE leanings within the game, perhaps because the PvE types got more out of it. The actual conquest part of the game was what I’d had the most hope for, and it doesn’t seem to be doing all that well. (Although I had pretty good time in the drop-in PvP stuff I did manage to play, it just didn’t have enough bite to stick around.) Worth checking out if you have the game, and hopefully they’ll do another free trial, too.


  1. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    I’m not entirely sure if the ‘partially non-subscription, partially subscription’ thing works out well. To me it calls to mind Hellgate London. But it’ll have to be researched (in a proper fashion) to see if this model works better or worse than the ‘only subs’ and the ‘no subs’ models.

    • Mithrandir0x says:

      I think they got rid of the subscription model and went to Guild Wars model. You can even play the game until level 10 like WAR (although I’m not entirely sure).

    • Baka says:

      Well, I was inches away from buying this game until I read that they want to re-instate the subsription the second their add-on launches. I can’t really find a source for it, but I was pretty sure I read it on their website, hidden in a news to “Sandstorm”, the name of the add-on.

      Yeah yeah, you could play without it, that works always well.

      On the other hand, if they add content to the subscription free model… I think I just have to check out this new zone with another trial-account.

    • nk says:

      They ditched subscriptions but the following addons will not be free. Only Sandstorm (the one released yesterday) was included in the price of the game. As the article says, Guild Wars-style.

    • Grot Punter says:

      The current model is entirely Guild Wars. You buy the game, you get everything up to Sandstorm. All further theoretical payments you would make would simply be in the form of buying additional expansions, just like Guild Wars, and for that matter, many PC games in general.

    • geldonyetich says:

      Leaving behind aspirations for a subscription-based model in a game that was not virtual worldly enough for it to feel like a worthy investment is a good transition, I just hope that it’s not “too little too late” for these guys.

      In many ways, Global Agenda is one of those games that deserves a lot more attention than it’s getting. It’s a genuinely well-built strategic FPS, as opposed to a less-cerebral, visceral FPS like you see everywhere else. It’s a turnoff to people who go into FPS looking only to be wowed by presentation, but a potential godsend to the genuine gamers out there looking for a captivating jungle gym for the mind.

      If I have any primary complaints about the game, it would just be that it’s got a PvP end game that holds very little aspirations towards being a balanced and fair experience. You can probably expect a few guilds with the best gear and members with ridiculous reflexes to dominate the end game. It gives everybody else very little to aspire towards. Perhaps Sandstorm introduces a change, if we still care to look.

  2. squirrel says:

    Then will they release server program and patch the game so that it can connect to any server chosen by player? I mean, afterall they no longer charge for subscription, then why care if someone else run a server for the game? By the way, I dont notice anywhere the disc version of the game is available. I mean, I once saw Hi-Rez put it on (kind of leased its place for some retailers to put their item and shippment and all are arranged by retailers themselves). It was collector edition DVD. But ever since then I never notice any other source to buy a retail version, and dont even talk about availability in any game shop.

  3. Jim Rossignol says:

    Aye, ’tis GW style. See article!

  4. Seamus says:

    I dunno, I started off really liking this game, and now it just feels rather like they’re trying to buff a turd. Came back to it a few weeks ago and the gameplay is horrid.

  5. Wulf says:

    I think the Guild Wars model is the best system to use, really, and I’m glad to see that Guild Wars 2 will be using it as well. I wouldn’t be half as hyped about Guild Wars 2 as I am if it had a monthly subscription, but that it looks so amazing and doesn’t have a monthly puts it head and shoulders above the original.

    The original Guild Wars worked so well, and I loved it. The thing is, I played Prophecies, and it was a lot of fun, but I didn’t complete it all in one go, I left for a bit and came back. When I came back, there was another campaign available. I finished Prophecies and saw that it was still the same game that I loved, that they hadn’t broken it (ArenaNet is good at not breaking their games, unlike apparently most other MMO developers).

    After finishing Prophecies, I was quite ready to shell out for Factions, because it was more of what I loved, but with a different storyline, and I was all for that. I romped through Factions, and left for a while again. By the time I returned to Guild Wars, there was a new campaign out, and the Eye of the North expansion. Eye of the North I snapped up right away, because I wanted Pyre. I mean, egad, a Charr hero? YES PLEASE.

    I figured that it’d probably be fun to pick up Nightfall as well, since it apparently had a lot of the things I knew I’d like about Eye of the North, so I picked up Nightfall, too. And I’ve since replayed those campaigns many, many times. Furthermore, I’ve actually bought those campaigns again and again, all three and Eye of the North, for friends whom I’ve wanted to take on that journey through Tyria (and beyond) with me.

    They gave me all sorts of fun little gifts as well, along the way. It was nice to be suddenly greeted by MOX, just for owning all the campaigns and the expansion. He was an awesome and unexpected gift, I didn’t know they were going to do that. And MOX is now another hero whom I take everywhere with me in Guild Wars. If I play Guild Wars, now, I get MOX and Pyre as soon as I can, and I take them everywhere, and I get to enjoy the brilliant storylines of the campaigns.

    But they’re fun to play, too. And that’s another big factor of what’s kept me coming back. I recently went back to play a Ranger, and I found that (I don’t PvP) Rangers don’t have homing missile arrows, they fire in a straight arc. This was amazing to me, as homing missile arrows is something that bugs the snot out of me in other MMOs, but in Guild Wars they can be dodged. This made playing a Ranger very interesting indeed. So there’s always a reason to go back to Guild Wars, I think 2 will be like that as well.

    What’s the point of all this, why am I evangelising about Guild Wars? The point is is that if any MMO is going to be risky, and do new and interesting things, things that people will want to come back and sample again, things that aren’t just boring, dull, mindless, brainwashy grinds, then they’re probably better off with the Guild Wars model. That way, they’ll sell more through campaigns and such, and people will feel good about playing the game.

    I know ArenaNet’s policy on pricing has an effect on how I see them, I’d probably be much more critical if they charged me every time I wanted to come back. I mean, I tend to leave for a few months and then come back to games, that’s just how I play. Usually, this either means a lifetime subscription (WALLET RAEP) or facing a monthly. With both the monthly subscription and the lifetime versions, I find myself frequently asking whether the game is worth it.

    With a monthly subscription, I might decide it isn’t worth going back, I can’t try the game to see if it’s the game I loved. With a lifetime, I could go back and find out that it’s a vastly different game, and that they’ve changed all the rules from when I started playing, and it’s a completely different game now, not the one I paid for, this can lead to some bad PR. But with the Guild Wars model, you can be more risky, you can try crazier stuff, you don’t have to stick with the old tried and tested approach.

    I might pick up Global Agenda now. I appreciate that they’re not trying to RAEP MY WALLET via a monthly or lifetime subscription, and due to that I’m actually intrigued by their experimental approach toward MMOs. I might end up even becoming a huge fan, because it’s not going to cost me a chunk of my life savings in order to see if their experiment was worthwhile, and their experiment might even turn out to be better than subscription MMOs*. So the risk is less risky, and they generate good will, good will that can be turned into expansion pack/campaign sales. I’m all for this.

    * Guild Wars > World of Warcraft in my opinion, and yes, I mean the original. There’s just so much I prefer about the approach of Guild Wars, that being… everything. The optional grind (no enforced grind) policy, the optional grouping policy, the more tactical (almost TCG-like) battle system that doesn’t require a billion buttons, the different approach to how support works in combat, the story missions, the story and lore period, and so on, and so on.

    TL;DR: Good for Global Agenda. Hopefully we’ll see more experimental MMOs following the Guild Wars formula.

  6. Marcin says:

    I’ve been enjoying GA quite a bit, and I hope the switch to subscription-free does them some good. Lots of good ideas in that game, just needs more *stuff* – ok, mostly more maps – in it.

    This expansion should throw in some needed lowbie content, maybe will convince people to stick around to level 8 (when the PvP opens up).

    I have yet to do any AvA. I don’t even know how to get into it, or how it works. It doesn’t seem a very well documented feature, which is odd since I thought it was the main focus … go figure.

    I disagree about “horrid” gameplay. I actually find it quite tight (great, omnipresent feedback on how you’re doing) and very tactical.

  7. FalseMyrmidon says:

    I was in the alpha for this and I remember almost everyone in the alpha saying that an entirely instanced MMO was boring and they might as well go play Quake. The dev response was basically: that’s not the game we’re designing so uninstalled combat isn’t going to happen.

    Still find it funny that they thought people would pay subscription for an entirely instanced FPS.

  8. Ovno says:

    Have they brought ina way for casual players to get involved int he open world pvp yet, because when I last played it unless you wanted to go hardcore there was no way in and after breaking free of my mmo addictions I don’t want another one…