Xsyon is a "sandbox" mmorpg developed by an independent developer. I am going to define "sandbox" as best as I can. Sandbox simply means you control the content/game play of the world. Rules, they are next to none. It means you log in one day, set a goal for either that day, or that week (or even that month) and obtain that goal. A true sandbox can handle all sorts of sociable scenarios. That's the beauty of it. Politics flow in and out of it. The more social situations you can create, the better the platform is in which the sandbox was built.
If you’re the type of player who needs to be told what to do, what to kill, where to go, etc. a sandbox mmorpg is not your type of game. And you will not like this game. There is nothing wrong with that, it just means you enjoy another style of mmorpg.
Xsyon is unlike any game I have played in that it offers true Terraforming. Not pre-determined structures that you destroy and rebuild again with the same look and mechanics, but a true dynamic landscape. When I first read about it last year I laughed and said “oh that can never be done it’s too complex of a system”, but this guy pulled it off…and it's really cool.
After loading up the game, I created a character and logged into one of the pre-selected areas. There is not a world map in this game. This is good and bad. Good in that it feels more realistic, it's more immersive, bad in that you can get lost VERY easily if you’re not paying visual attention. Coordinates are everything in this game for travelling, meeting other players etc. Like in Shadowbane.
The first thing I did after I landed into the game was create a tribe and start looking for a place to drop a "totem". A totem is the exact equivalent to Shadowbane's tree of life. And like in Shadowbane, I had to run around for a few minutes looking for a place to drop it. You cannot place one too close to another one etc. Placing your totem will be a big part of this game. It will be a LAND RUSH for those interested in the game and should be fun once it goes live for those looking to obtain the "best spots" - which if you ask anyone at the moment, is their own lol .
After the totem was placed (and I wrote down the coordinates), I had no clue what to do next. So I walked a few yards and found some interactable logs stacked in a pile. I picked one up and moved it to my totem area and dropped it on the ground. Interesting. I went back and moved the rest. Not for any specific reason other than it looked cool to have something deemed as "mine". Little did I know those objects can be picked up, carried, and dropped by anyone. lol
As I walked around I opened the "Resource" window. It has 4 slots, which dynamically change icons representing what you can gather/interact with as you move around the map. For example, when you walk into water, a water icon appears along with a rock (limestone) and perhaps sand. You click the water icon and you drink water. You click the rock icon to collect the limestone. I found it in my best interest to always have the Resource window open on my GUI.
Next I spotted a huge mountain base with some water flowing below it. Here I stumbled upon some animals. 2 raccoons and a deer. Combat in this game is somewhat lack luster, but I am new, have no real weapons or armor so maybe it's lack luster due to that reason. Anyway after killing the animals you get the option to skin them. You can take 3 types on bones, the head, the skin, the feet, the ribs. spine, etc. Pretty realistic. lol
It was now I realized my personal inventory was full. I noticed there were some sort of baskets within other people’s territory I had walked thru. These baskets were "locked down". I asked in general chat (not global, general chat = local chat) if anyone in the area could make storage baskets, if so, I would trade them for bone.
I got a response back. I asked for his/her coordinates and told him I would meet at his totem, which was actually not far from mine. As I got closer to him, I could hear him making things. Since there is no tracking ability/mini map with dots representing players, sounds will play an important role in this game. I was also nervous. I was inside someone else’s territory. He/she could kill and loot me at will. Luckily he was nice. This in itself will play a HUGE role in this game. If you’re a jerk, your neighbors might shun you. That could make life hard for you. If your nice and generous, you could become someone pretty powerful and respected within the local community. You could also be a tyrant with a band of mindless worshippers. You see where I am going with this....tons of social scenarios could play out in this game.
I traded him all my bone from the animals and in return he made me 6 baskets. He was also kind enough to give me some extra tools he had.
Heading home I got stuck in someone’s territory. Apparently the owner was in the process of digging a trench to funnel water from a nearby lake onto his territory. His trenches were pretty deep. So deep if you walked into one, without a mechanism to get out, you might have to dig your way out, or call for help (lol). Luckily I was able to follow the trench to the lake and swim back onto land.
I took the baskets back to my totem and placed them on the ground. You can set access to them similar to UO - "Tribe", "Private", "Friends" etc.
Also items can be dropped onto and picked up off the ground like in UO. Bags, weapons, tools, pretty much anything. Kind of cool.
Now that I had some "storage" I set off to gather some more resources. I collected 10 rocks and some flint and made a fire near my totem. I used the "foraging" action in random spots around my totem and was able to obtain some plants, which I could eat.
Lots of Mindcraft elements were starting to take form and I was getting hooked....and I had only interacted with 1 person and had barely left the area in which I had started.....lol
This game could be really fun. It's unlike anything I have ever played far as a full blown persistent mmorpg goes. If your a serious role player, you might of just found heaven. This game, in its current state, offers the most robust role-play mechanisms I have seen to date in a mmorpg. It is the definition of a good sandbox in the making for sure.
I will post some more as I play the game. But the first night logged in was a lot of fun, and this game is most certainly off to a good start from my perspective.
Man that write up was the nuts.. Thanks for sharing.. Its precisely what you, and others have wrote on other forums that demands I part with some cash tomorrow night when I'm home and get into this shizzle )
Look forward to your next update... I may have one of my own too.