It's cyberpunk, released in early 2000's, and gives a huge matrix/blade runner vibe to it. It is an MMO played in first person.
The original devs shut down long ago and gave the source code and their blessing to the new company who has been running Neocron since. There are somewhat frequent updates from what I can tell, most recently end of Feb. Not sure of player count, but there were plenty of topics created on the forums.
Oldschool MMO, one of my first experiences. Full disclosure though : It is technically considered an MMOFPS with RPG elements. for all intents and purposes, your character gains stats through exp dedicated to a certain skill, you earn money and items from looting an enemy area and killing them, , and there are quests that you can accept for fame and money, there aren't traditional levels, you are the sum of your skills and their respective levels, as far as I can tell.
Combat I'm still getting used to it looks a bit janky, but I'm also low level with no spells or gear. It does have a neat mechanic with the targetting reticle shrinking the longer you aim at a specific enemy. It also shrinks faster if you're up close, and even faster if you're crouching. This is so you can't just walk into a room and fire blindly everywhere, you have to make calculated decisions, such as crouch and give up your mobility for accuracy..
So, if you're trying to pass through an invested tunnel, it is usually best to set up a camp around a corner, crouch, try to lure it to you, and blast the second the reticle maxes out.
I downloaded it as a kid and was so intrigued by the world. I lost track of this game for YEARS after, and just remembered the name of it and downloaded it. The original company gave all rights and access to a successful private server who has been overtaking the project since.
It is .. rough to start, which they go out of their way to tell you. They do have a tutorial which helps you learn its inventory and quickbar, along with special implants and drugs to enhance your stats. One of your 'weapons' is a flashlight for navigating the dark areas – pretty neat in an MMO. You can also swap to most weapons, use PSI, play a hacking minigame on locked chests to try to force them open, etc.
My Psionist came with a glove that powers his PSI that has to be equipped as a Implant for it to work properly. They also give you an apartment right off the bat next to whatever syndicate you chose, with the option to upgrade, buy other apartments, vehicles, your choice..
The UI is extremely clunky and hard to get used to. I was fumbling much longer than I should have to equip my psionic abilities. Tab brings up the main menu for inventory, skills, psi, jobs, etc. I love the beeps and boops as you move stuff around, and leaving the UI windows window open makes a 'hmmmmmmmmmmm' noise like old computer monitors used to make, for extra ambience. Simple but effective.
But the atmosphere is so SO good. The soundtrack is futuristic ambient, very much a love letter to Blade Runner, and the scenery would match. Brightly colored neon signs show off some player-conveniences that you will run into, such as the bank, item shops, and more. My favorite is an automated monorail in real time that flies through the city. These actually helped me understand the layout just a bit better too.Storage units to keep your stuff, and it follows with you, In-game email, forum, player-created quests, AI-generated quests. It also starts you off with an apartment once you decide what faction you want to join (city planners, hackers, police brute type, psionists, etc). I cannot stress how good the atmosphere is.
Just take an hour, suspend disbelief as best you can, skip the tutorial and just run around
Honestly, I had fun just walking around and trying to re-remember stuff from so long ago.
Haven't gotten nearly far enough to say anything beyond first impressions, but I remembered this game vividly almost 2 decades ago, and am looking forward to messing with it on and off.
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