Firefall is perhaps the most visually stunning free-to-play MMORPG out there. Set in 22nd century Brazil, hundreds of players either team up for PvE action, or go after each other in arena-style PvP. The game is comprised of four tremendous open world maps, ranging from a wildly colorful coral bed to the Amazon Rain Forest itself…and lots in between, including an active volcanic basin! Although the game could be described as “pay to enhance”, Firefall is certainly not “pay to win”, making it one of the most appealing MMOs, period. If that weren’t enough, the game also includes 117 Steam achievements; a must for hunters like me. Look closely at the picture below. At center you see a little blue sparky thing. Actually, it’s a data recording called a “SIN Imprint”, and its glow can be seen from quite a distance.
There are (or were) about two dozen such items scattered in various areas around the game. As you collect them, you earn Steam achievements. Find them all and you’re well on your way to a coveted “perfect game”; a statistic over which many Steam players compete.
Last winter, Firefall‘s developer, Red 5 Studios decided to remove the SIN Imprints entirely. One theory was that these items conflicted somehow with the new snow-covered ground overlay, which remained until January, 2015. When the winter theme was over, the snow was gone…but so were the SIN Imprints. Back on Steam, the SIN-related achievements were still showing as available. This meant that at least temporarily, players of this well-designed and well-meaning MMO were unable to attain a perfect game.
After conversing with the developer, it was discovered that the SINs were simply bugged for the time being, and not to worry. Well, it’s almost nine months later and Red 5 has neither returned the SINs, nor removed the Steam achievements from the list. What they did add were a series of challenging in-game events, the Amazon Rain Forest map, and a host of striking DLC add-ons…indeed impressive.
When starting a new game, Firefall doesn’t offer a range of character classes (you’re always a human). Instead, you elect to wear one of 16 different suits of armor called battleframes, or simply frames. Each frame features a unique set of offensive and defensive skills, as well as customized weapons. Like any good MMO, you can later find and craft enhancements and modules to further refine your character’s abilities. Upon reaching the highest character level with your current frame (Level 40, as of this writing), you unlock an additional frame of your choice; until you’ve unlocked them all.
I’ve since gone on to raise all 16 frames to Level 40, and I love each and every one of them. They all have access to the same inventory backpack, so it’s easy to swap items between them. I’ve been playing Firefall since the July, 2014 full release; kudos to Daniel (fearless leader of the Gamer’s Haven) for introducing me to this amazing MMO.
So my suggestion to Red 5 Studios is simply to either coordinate with Steam to remove the no-longer feasible achievements, or return the beloved cyan sparkles to the shallow waters and tall grasses that make up the most fun and interactive free-to-play MMO on the market!