:siren:Updated as of 1/7/08:siren:
Copy & Pasted from wikipedia.
Anarchy Online's plot revolves around the fight to control the fictional planet Rubi-Ka. Its original four year storyline was written and later directed by Ragnar Tørnquist, who also developed the stories for Funcom's The Longest Journey and Dreamfall titles. It was designed to be played out as a series of in-game events lasting from 2001 until 2005.
According to a description on the game's official website, hyper-corporation Omni-Tek was granted a one thousand year lease to the desert planet on Jan 01, 28708 shorty after its discovery. It was a seemingly useless arid landscape far from civilization until the discovery of the mineral notum. That mineral's properties led to major leaps forward in nanotechnology that made possible the large-scale manipulation of matter, energy, and even resurrection from death. The first five hundred years of Omni-Tek's unfettered control of Rubi-Ka were marked with an exemplary worker treatment record, but as time passed the company's policies degraded into near totalitarianism. It was then that a significant number of poorly treated colonists rebelled and began to trade stolen notum to a rival corporation. These rebel groups, collectively calling themselves the Clans, fought a series of wars with Omni-Tek in the centuries leading up to the in-game timeline.
After the game's release, Tørnquist published his short fiction novel Prophet Without Honor (Anarchy Online Book 1) that serves as a historical primer. The story has since been extended beyond its original conclusion, but a second book was never written.
Role-players often participated in and influenced the outcome of the story during the first four years. This is evidenced in a New York Times article, published in 2003, about a well-known player named Rick Stenlund. Stenlund used the game's message boards to organize an in-game rally in protest of a proposed change to gameplay. Administrators responded by preparing a role-play event with official characters and incorporating the rally into the official timeline.
The Gameplay of Anarchy Online is based on the same features as many of its predecessors in the MMORPG genre of games. Players assume the roles of newly arrived colonists to planet Rubi-Ka where they create unique virtual characters based on two genders, four species, and 14 different professions such as Agent or Doctor. They then choose to align themselves with either the Omni-Tek corporation, the rebel Clans, or to remain neutral. There is no specific goal that must be realized to win the game, nor is there any rigid gameplay structure. Instead, the general objective of the game is to continually improve the abilities of characters by acquiring items and killing enemies, the so-called Nonlinear gameplay style of play. The status of any one character is measured in 200 consecutive "levels" reached as experience points are earned in a variety of ways. Upon reaching level 200, players with the Shadowlands expansion pack are given the opportunity to permanently commit to the side they chose earlier in order to gain another 20 shadow levels reached as shadow knowledge.
As players earn experience and gain levels, they are able to increase the skills of their characters through the game's three distinct skill systems. The first base system awards characters with a number of points after reaching each new level. These points are spent to improve skills of their choice. Although many are intended for particular professions, none of the 83 available skills are denied outright to any character. "Perks" are a second skill system introduced with the Shadowlands and Alien Invasion expansions. Perk points are rewarded to the player at specific milestones during their progression. They are chosen from tiered groups which augment specific types of base skills. Research, the third system, was introduced with the Lost Eden expansion. Players may opt to designate a percentage of their earned experience toward either personal or game-wide research projects. Augmented base skills and abilities are rewarded as research projects are completed.
A variety of items can be acquired, at cost of by effort, to further improve characters. Each character has a number of slots representing areas of the body, such as "Left-Arm" and "Head," in which items can be worn. The minimum skill requirements must be met to wear any given item. In addition to common items types like "armor" and "weapons," the game also provides slots for "nano controller units" and "implants." Nano controller units act as a finite pool for players to store skill bonuses in. The more units characters have, the more powerful bonuses that they can make use of. Implants are items worn "under the skin" that give skill bonuses and in some cases new abilities. The slots available for implants are generally the same as for regular armor
Players can take part in the game's content either alone, in small temporary teams, as part of a formal organization, or any combination of the three. Organizations are semi-permanent groups, similar to clans in other multi-player games, where players band together for their mutual benefit. The creator and leader of the organization chooses its name, and the governing style used to delegate privileges within such as feudalism, monarchy, departmental, etc. Organizations may also purchase city plots located throughout the game world and place prefabricated buildings on them. These buildings offer a wide range of benefits including skill bonuses, ease of transportation, role-playing venues, launching orbital attacks for use in mass-pvp, and personal automated shops to help members sell items more easily. Non-members can use the "Global Market Search" interface as an in-game search engine for these shop buildings, finding items marked for sale by others.
In addition to killing the variety of enemies found in almost every region of the game world, players also attempt quests or missions to gain experience. Missions are indoor collections of enemies generated dynamically on-demand by the player with options such as how difficult it will be, which tactics players prefer to use, and whether enemies are more likely to be humanoid or creatures. Other more difficult objectives such as raids are designed to require the cooperation of large groups of players to complete. These often involve completing an objective based on past experience, or by involving enough players to succeed by brute force. Members of an organization that own a city plot may also initiate on-demand raids inside their city. The difficulty of these raids is determined dynamically by the game based on the players who initiate it. Missions, as well as some raids and other content, are "instanced" meaning that once a group initiates the content, no other players may interrupt them.
Fighting between players is controlled by the use of "supression gas". Certain zones are assigned a certain level of supression gas that can enable players to engage in player-versus-player (pvp) combat. In zones that contain 100% supression gas nobody can attack anybody else. In 75% gas (the most common level) fighting is allowed by requesting a duel or becoming pvp "flagged" (so-called because the player's name becomes enclosed by a double **asterisk** flag). Pvp flags are temporarily gained by either attacking another pvp flagged player or by attacking certain non-player characters (NPCs) such as guards. In 25% gas it is possible to attack anybody that is within your level range. Lower levels of gas exist but they do not affect general pvp combat. Various levels of gas can be found at "Land Control Areas" which are small areas of land all over the planet in which organizations can fight for the right to build "towers". These towers give skill bonuses to all members of the victorious organization. The number of fields is limited, which encourages groups to fight the incumbent owner for control. It is not necessary to be a member of either the attacking or defending organization to take part in the battle. As most organizations build alliances with other organizations this can often lead to a great many players involved in a single battle, depending upon who is online at that time. Another venue for players to fight each other are the battle-stations, a series of enclosed games that take place between Omni-Tek and the Clans. Each side fights to capture and hold points on a map which increase their score until the winning score is reached. The Lost Eden expansion pack, advertised to enhance combat between players, provides several mechs and other heavy weapons that can be piloted. These vehicles are allowed in most areas, although they are specifically designed for combat on land control areas and the battle-stations. Anarchy Online enforces a limit on the range on levels in which one player may attack another because of the relatively large difference between abilities at different levels.
Day-to-day administration of the game is performed by paid employees known as "Genetic Manipulators"; which are analogous to Game Masters in other online games. This staff is supplemented by an official group of volunteer players named Advisors of Rubi-Ka (ARK). Advisors help administrators answer problem reports in-game, provide new player orientation, and help coordinate both official and player-run events.
Anarchy Online's unique proposed features such as the science fiction setting, large playable area, and dynamic missions created significant interest leading up to the release date. The game was one month away from launching when it made its second appearance at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in 2001, and several video game websites such as GameSpot had written articles about the game's development. At the European Computer Trade Show that same year it was awarded Multiplayer Game of Show.
The game's launch problems had a strong negative effect with initial critics. Many larger video game websites, such as Gamespy, chose to wait a month or more before publishing a formal review, and the release is often briefly mentioned in later reviews of the game as a juxtaposition. It went on to be received favorably from most reviewers, averaging a 7.6 out of 10 from GameSpy, GameSpot, and IGN. Caryn Law of GameSpy called it "a promising game with some big technical flaws." IGN described it as "a brilliant, engaging, profound MMORPG," but they added it came with "atrocious technical problems." PC Gamer magazine awarded it with Best Massively Multiplayer Game and described it as "the next great MMORPG."
Anarchy Online's four published expansion packs were reviewed favorably, although not without some criticisms. The Shadowlands expansion was the most critically acclaimed by far, winning several Editor's Choice Awards from IGN, CNet, GameSpot, GameSpy and others after its release in 2003. Critics applauded the size and scope of it, such as Andrew Park of GameSpot who called it "absolutely enormous." Craig Morrison of IGN praised the artistic style of the six new themed areas calling them "visually stunning." Micheal Lafferty of GameZone wrote that it "has depth in spite of its linear nature." The Alien Invasion expansion, released in 2004, did not receive the same abundance of praise as its predecessor, although most scores were above 7 out of 10. The new content it introduced, in critic's eyes, was not designed for new players. GameZone wrote, "...this is definitely targeted toward in-game organizations." They went on to say that it "certainly brings new depth to the title." Most popular gaming websites did not review the Lost Eden expansion released in 2005. The expansion's content itself was well received, but critics pointed to the game's aging interface and visuals compared to newer titles. Sarah Borger of Games Radar wrote that it "make[s] the world hard to interact with," but she went on to acclaim the new features."
:siren: Don't Flame For Bad Graphics. They Aren't everything! :siren:
:siren:New prettier AO:siren:
:siren:New Engine Video:siren:
Try it and love it. http://anarchyonline.com
Oh yeah... :siren: It's FREE! :siren:
But... if you want Shadowlands (the first expansion) it's 5 dollars a month only! The other way to get aditional content is to get all 3 expansions and pay 15 dollars a month.
:derp: Not free but CHEAP! :derp:
Most Important Map Mod:
Download the CSPmap