MMO Review: Dead Frontier
Dead Frontier is a free browser-based survival-horror MMO. For the first time in a web-browser players have the option of surviving in a post-apocalyptic world plagued with zombies either single-handedly or in multi-player mode.
The site for Dead Frontier and the zombie-based art that surrounds the form to sign up are very appealing, being both dark and ominous, but the in-game graphics are a huge let-down.
The graphics are set from one view point only – above your character. If any of you have played the first Grand Theft Auto game, you will know the type of graphics I'm referring to.
The game is still relatively new, and so it only offers one playable map to d ate, but hopefully there will be more to come.
If you're a gamer who likes sleek design and graphics in your game, Dead Frontier will probably not be that appealing. If, on the other hand, you can overlook this flaw, it can be a very enjoyable gaming experience.
In Game Play
Your character's abilities are strongly based on how healthy and nourished you are. Your health, nourishment, and armor stats are indicted on the top-right of the screen, along with any money you have on you, and your current weapon is displayed on the top-left. This means that you will have to venture into the zombie infested inner-city to loot and scavenge for supplies. Eventually you will end up with a surplus of supplies which you can sell in the 'Marketplace' or scrap at 'The Yard'.
No matter which area of Fairview city you decide to visit you will most definitely come into contact with a zombie (an NPC) . And seeing one zombie usually means there's more nearby. Obviously you have to defend yourself from them, and, unless you chose to be have a military or chef background, you will be left with a penknife as your only weapon, which can leave you at a huge disadvantage and turn leveling into grinding.
Each time you defeat a zombie your character is awarded experience points, which you must accumulate in order to gain levels and increase your skills. Increasing a level gives your character free stat points which you can add to their skills as you like.
This may all sound rather easy and straight-forward but it is, in fact, very difficult to gain levels with a pen knife as your only weapon, because each time your character dies a fraction of your experience points are also lost. Death also means you have to endue the painful re-spawn time of up to one minute, and lose any money you have on you.
Basically leveling up is difficult unless you are already equipped with a good standard of weapon, and dying frequently is a huge turn-off because of the game's re-spawn time.
Like the majority of online games that offer the multi-payer function, Dead frontier also offers the option of choosing your class. In Dead Frontier, however, classes are defined as whichever occupation you previously held before the zombie apocalypse.
The main occupations are military, chef and medical. There is a range of other occupations, but there offer little or no perks.
Having previously been in the military is a huge advantage in the game as you will find yourself equipped with a handgun and ammo when you first start. You will also find your combat stats are higher than any other players'.
Since the game is based on realism, which requires your character to be nourished in order to function properly, chefs are quiet useful as they can prepare food to make it even more nourishing. Selling food you have cooked at the Marketplace can be profitable if you reach a high enough level. A chef is also given the added perk of having a carving knife instead of a penknife, which has a higher critical hit rate, doing more damage to opponents.
Doctors obviously take on the common role of healer. Unlike other MMOs it is actually quite easy to be a healer without depending on a party to defend you, and you are also able to sell your skills in the marketplace.
Dead Frontier dose not have a very large online community, but the few members it has are very active. There is never a shortage of items to be bought from The Marketplace. This also has a negative effect as it means that it is difficult to sell items, especially since the prices are pre-set so there is no room for competitiveness. If you find yourself broke and in need of funds, the Yard will offer you a fraction of the price for any item and pay you immediately.
The game's forums are fairly active considering the amount of players that are usually logged in (usually under 1000) and, one your character is higher than level five it is easy to find a party to join.
A considerable amount of the community seem to overlook the poor-quality graphics in order to roleplay as a survivor in a 'last man on Earth' situation.
A horde of zombies regularly attack the Fairview outpost once every twenty-four hours, in another attempt at realism. Unfortunately, as far as I can tell there are no holiday events or double experience events.
Dead Frontier does not have the flashy in-game graphics that most MMOs offer these days. But there are also not a large amount of zombie survival-horror MMOs either. Dead Frontier is filling a niche, and successfully too.
If you want to play an original MMO that offers a little bit of variety compared to most others, then Dead Frontier is a good choice. If you are just looking for another flashy free MMO then this probably will not satisfy you.