Firefall FAQ by Phobos
What is Firefall?
Firefall is a team-based action shooter combining deep character progression with a cooperative campaign in a dynamic, persistent open world that can be shared with hundreds of other players. Firefall will also have a rich competitive multiplayer component incorporating built-in features such as army support, ladders, tournaments and stats.
Firefall takes place on Earth, but it is an Earth transformed. The year is 2233. A highly efficient form of energy was discovered by utilizing the resource Crystite. The overuse of Crystite led to the disastrous arrival of the Melding, an energy storm that has engulfed the majority of the planet. You play as a surviving human in the eye of the Melding storm.
Recently, humanity has been fighting for survival against a race calling themselves the Chosen. They emerged from the Melding with only one known goal, the destruction of the human race.
What are battleframes?
Battleframes are sets of armor and weapons that denote your class in Firefall. You will customize these pieces of armor and weapons through modules and upgrades to create your own unique style of play. Battleframes can be switched out during gameplay at a battleframe station, giving you the option to change tactics on-the-fly.
How many battleframes will there be at launch?
We plan to have five frames at launch, with others to be released throughout the life of the game. So far we have released information about the Assault, Medic, Recon, and Engineer battleframes.
When does Firefall release?
Firefall does not follow a traditional release cycle. We consider Firefall to be a service rather than a product, thus we’ve designed the release of the service in the same vein as web services of the modern age.
We’ve begun our beta invitational and will continue to grow beta in invite waves over time. In December of this year, we plan to open up the Firefall virtual item store and begin taking micro-transaction payments that will fund the game. Beta invites will continue past this December and into next year. Once there are more invites than we can possibly give out, the game will be available for anyone to download.
How much will Firefall cost to play?
We are so excited about Firefall that we want to make sure everyone can play it and join their friends in the game. When Firefall releases, it will be available online to download and play for absolutely free.
Will there be a subscription fee?
Absolutely not. We do not feel that a subscription fee best suits the style of game we are creating.
How do you plan to make money?
We plan to offer a marketplace for Firefall that will offer players items to enhance their gaming experience. We are adamantly against selling anything that might compromise the skill-based aspect of the game.
What payment options will you support?
We are still in the planning stages of our cash shop, including methods of payment that will be supported at release.
When is beta and how do I sign up for it?
We have recently announced the start of our beta process. It is starting small and will grow as we need to put more and more stress on the servers. Keep your eyes open, we’ll make announcements when it’s time to check your inboxes.
Just by signing up for the forums, you’re automatically registered for the beta program. Hang out, have fun. Speculate with new friends or debate with new enemies.
Will there be vehicles at release?
In our previous demos, you have probably seen vehicles in use by players. We are very sensitive to how vehicles can dominate a game. We want the focus to be on the Battleframes. Vehicles in the future would have be designed with this in mind. It is still a work in progress.
Will there be melee?
Not at launch, but we have been and will continue to look into it. We want to make sure that any feature that gets included into the game is both fun and balanced.
What are the system requirements to play the game?
We have not finalized the system requirements yet. As the game is still in development, there is plenty of optimization to still be performed and hardware testing to take place. We would like the game to run on as many systems as possible, so we are making sure the game degrades gracefully on many different hardware setups.
What platforms are you releasing on? Will Firefall play on my Mac?
As Firefall is our first title as Red 5 Studios, we want to focus on making it the best game it can be. For the initial release, we will only be delivering Firefall on Windows PC as we believe that is where we can provide the best product. A Mac or Linux version would require quite a lot of additional thought and work, but we are not ready to rule them out for future releases. Likewise, a console release has not been ruled out for the future either.
Will Firefall be released in my country?
We want to get Firefall into as many hands as possible. We haven’t finalized exact locations for all of our datacenters, but rest assured that we will have a global release for the game. Language support and specific countries will be announced as soon as they are decided upon.
Red 5 Studios controls all publishing rights in North America and Europe. Other regions are still being worked on with local publishers.
Will this game be available on Steam or Onlive?
We are looking to get the game into as many hands as possible. If there’s a good deal we can make with them, then maybe.
How are the servers setup?
We don’t use servers or shards. We use channels that get built up as demand increases. Each channel is really a mega persistent instance that holds a few hundred players at a time. When you enter the world of Firefall, you will be entering a specific channel of New Eden. New Eden is the large open-world environment where the last remnants of humanity are making their stand. There may be any number of different channels of New Eden going on depending on concurrent player levels. The goal is to have a single New Eden instance support hundreds of players. The number is still being fine-tuned as we determine what is too much and what is too little to create a fun environment.
Now, once you’re in a New Eden channel, that doesn’t mean you’ll be locked into that channel. Even from the get-go, we’ll try to put you into a New Eden channel where your friends and army mates are in, but should you need to change channels, you’ll be able to do so.
What extent of character customization will there be?
Right now you can change things like your skin color, face type, hair style, battleframe colors, facial hair, voice, There is also a comprehensive Battleframe coloring system called Warpaint, which will also include a rich decal system as time goes on. We’re a shooter first and foremost so the player silhouette is very important, but we’re also an online game with character persistence so customization is equally important. There’s a lot more on the table being discussed or already being worked on.
How big will the world be?
Firefall is an online team based shooter first and foremost, so our world is on the smaller size, but big compared to shooters. We don’t want big for the sake of big. Everything will serve the gameplay experience.
Plans for expansion?
We have planned out a lot of additional content that will be included in the years to come. We will be growing out the world, expanding the story, and including additional feature. We can – and intend to – expand it as far and wide as we can take it, as long as it enhances the player experience. We want to emphasize that you’re not going to buy a map pack or anything like that. You download the game you can access all the areas, but over time we’re going to release more items in the store and things like that.
Will there be open world PvP?
For launch, the open world will be focused on creating a cooperative experience between players trying to save the world against the Melding. Our custom engine was designed for open world and large battles and we have plans in the future to expand this to open world PvP when possible.
Will there be destructible environments?
Firefall is an open, persistent world. With destructible terrain the world would be destroyed after the first day.
Is there an integrated voice chat system?
We’ve built voice chat, quick chat, and text chat into the game to support communication between your team members, your army members and even with specific individuals.