Toxikk is a throwback, a self-proclaimed bullshit-free arena shooter that looks back to the days of Unreal Tournament. No regenerating health, no free to play, no classes. Yes! An end to class warfare, an end to something-for-nothing culture, an end to untenable healthcare! The video below is a party political broadcast from Reakktor Studios but it shows the walk as well as the talk. It's a Back To Basics campaign backed up by a game that's thankfully quite a bit more colourful than John Major.
Looks good, yeah? Maybe. Statements like the following make me realise how little I know about modern competitive FPS games.
After each death, you respawn with a melee weapon and a basic pistol. All other weapons are to be picked up while you play. Character customization is of cosmetic nature only.
However, unlike the shooter giants from the past, TOXIKK features an XP and a bounty system. The XP system and its associated ranks are used for reputation purposes, for our match-making algorithms and to unlock new skins, but they do NOT change the stats or the abilities of your character. Your rank will show other players how experienced and skilled YOU are (rather than showing the experience level of your game character).
I know that's not how the majority work anymore but it still seems weird to see developers having to point out that they're doing simple things in an apparently old-fashioned way. I enjoy unlocks and levelling to an extent, but if I'm going to run around an arena shooting at people, I don't want anyone to have an in-built advantage because they've spent more money or played for longer.
In an alarming development, real life racing competition has taken a step toward introducing pay-to-win buffs of a sort. Creepy.
For those who came here from Twitter, I say this. Never forget.