APB: When Worlds Collide

As a species, humans tend to congregate in groups together based on various commonalities, be it geography, economic status, favorite sports franchises, political affiliations or any other...

As a species, humans tend to congregate in groups together based on
various commonalities, be it geography, economic status, favorite
sports franchises, political affiliations or any other number of bonds
that link us. Gamers typically are no different than any other group,
and like most others, we have our own unique subsets to further
categorize us. While many of us in the gamer clique tend to occupy more
than one subset, most tend to gravitate more to one type of game more
frequently and gain more enjoyment from that genre than the others.
MMOG players may be the most devoted of all the gaming phylum due to
the relative high amount of commitment required to play the games at a
high level, but just below us in the order of “needed amount
of psychosis” required to play probably lies the hardcore
First Person Shooter players.

 In the past few years the vitriol that was once reserved for
MMOGs from the press at large has been deflected away from them to a
very specific inhabitant of the FPS realm, Grand Theft Auto.

border="1" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="5">
href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/node/69341"> style="border: 0px solid ; width: 200px; height: 113px;" alt=""
src="http://www.tentonhammer.com/image/view/69342/preview" />
style="font-style: italic;">Hardcore urban street
  APB style.

A quick
point of clarification here, to label GTA as merely an FPS is a bit of
a misnomer (as well as a lot of acronyms for one sentence!) as it has
many elements of several popular game types all rolled into one, but in
the end it really is you playing by yourself and whacking people with
various weapons.  Several other pretty blatant rip offs of
this innovative game have popped up, but none has seriously threatened
GTA for the title of Most Negative Press.  As with the
aforementioned MMOGer, it takes a certain personality type to really
immerse yourself into the GTA lifestyle and many who do so find
themselves hooked, as demonstrated by the game’s huge
popularity and seemingly endless sequels and spinoffs. So what happens
when a game developer tries to merge these two distinct and fairly
brash personality types? Do we achieve some sort of uber -gamer
homogony, or is this the new clash of the titans?

Looming on the horizon are several new offerings
that have a solid FPS feel
to them. While this is certainly nothing new in the market, it does
tend to signal more of a trend than did, say, Planetside or Anarchy
Online when they were released. Another trend being brought to the
forefront of massively multiplayer online role-playing games is a
departure from the tired and overused fantasy setting by way of a shift
to high tech and “real world” style
games.  Of this new breed of MMOG, none combines all the
elements quite the way All Points Bulletin (or APB you acronym fans)
does. APB looks to be the epicenter of the impending collision between
GTA and MMO gamers and the results look to be very interesting to say
the least.

This is hardly surprising since both games have a huge similarity at
their core, both are the creations of David Jones.  APB,
according to developer Realtime Worlds Executive Colin Macdonald in an
interview with vg247, is “the bastard child of everything
we’ve been striving towards over the 15-20 years" and "what
Dave’s always wanted to do from GTA and before Crackdown and
APB." While the moniker of massive may not apply as well to APB as it
does to other MMOGs, it is still appropriate given that you will be
able to interact with significantly more players than most LAN style
games allow and the while the world may not be completely persistent,
your character is.

Character advancement in APB will be vastly different from anything
currently on the market as Realtime Worlds has stated that there will
be no leveling in the game and that upgrades to your character will
come in the way of weapons, currency and the ever popular bling.

border="1" cellpadding="5" cellspacing="5">
href="http://www.tentonhammer.com/node/69345"> style="border: 0px solid ; width: 200px; height: 200px;" alt=""
src="http://www.tentonhammer.com/image/view/69335/preview" />
style="font-style: italic;">APB bridges the gap
between single player console style games and the persistent world MMOG

is a pretty bold move for a company to take and one that, while often
promised during initial development, is almost never delivered. It will
be interesting to see if this deviation from the norm will go over well
with the typical carrot on a string crowd.  This point of
contention, more than any other, may be what keeps the typical MMOG
player from giving this game much of a chance.

Another key component to long term game success comes down to market
share a game can gather. The PC market is vastly different from the
console market in both demographic and buying habits, so it remains to
be seen what sort of cross over factor there will be, but I suspect
that the allure of playing against (and with) a larger number of
players that the typical console provides will be quite
attractive.  If the launch of the game goes smoothly then I
believe APB will get the attention of a lot of traditional MMOG players
that are hungry for a new experience in their favorite genre, even
without the traditional leveling model.

From all indications it looks that APB will be able to bring together
two fairly different crowds to explore, exploit and battle it out on
the rough and tumble streets of this adult themed game, keeping them
there, however, will be the harder part and the true test of the games
mettle.  Stay tuned to Ten Ton Hammer for more news and
articles about APB and all the games in this rapidly expanding genre of

To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our APB: Reloaded Game Page.

Last Updated:

About The Author

Around the Web