If you are a fan of post-apocalyptic open world type games but aren’t all hung up on early access, then do I have a game for you! Will to Live Online is an upcoming FPS MMORPG from AlphaSoft LLC. This small, independent studio based out of Eastern Europe, created a world that is far gone from the world we know today. On its surface, the game appears to be a mix of games such as Fallout, Day Z, and S.T.A.L.K.E.R, however, it still manages to keep it their own. The Story The story starts off a bit vague but after a few hours of play, it becomes intense all at once. I implore players to watch the beginning story from the main screen first since there isn’t one before that and it is widely confusing. Will to Live Online takes place 50 or so years after the much aptly named “Global Catastrophe.” Scientists found odd rocks and they used them for energy until it all blew up in their face, literally. This wiped out over half of the human population. Now, terrifying mutants and terrible beasts rule the land. Players then take the role of one of the remaining survivors. You are then tasked with navigating this dangerous wasteland, surviving day-to-day in order to reclaim the land that was lost. If you know anything about post-apocalyptic games you know where it goes from here. It’s 100 hours of roaming around and not doing the story. The beginning of the game may be a little slow but once you find your way outside the main city things really do pick up. Take your time doing this though, it gets pretty difficult out there. I died many times outside because I never built my character up (which was my own fault). As you play, you will notice there is a substantial amount of dialogue and script for quests with the various main NPCs you encounter. There is so much to read. The NPCs rarely talk out there the whole dialogue. This wasn’t the main issue I had with the dialogue though, I love reading and you may be interested to read and learn about the Zone and it’s history like I was. The really awful part is that the English translation is just awful and difficult to understand. The broken English is obvious to the point that it’s laughable. Since this is in Early Access this hopefully will be fixed in the future, but considering the game is originally in Russian, any hope for that is dashed on the Kremlin. Sorry, comrade. The Gameplay The gameplay of Will To Live Online uses the most classic MMORPG experiences around. So you will chat with NPCs in cities to get locations for a quest. Then you will be playing fetch to a determined number of items, kill a specific number of enemies (maybe a Boss will be involved), or you will have to explore a certain location. Afterward, you come back to whoever gave you said quest and collect your reward or XP, money, and/or items. Aside from quests, the RPG element is still very prominent. There is character progression, which means as you play your character levels up and you will be awarded skill points to upgrade your abilities. Each character class, from the four available, has their own skill tree and attributes to develop, this includes set proficiencies with certain weapons. Players can choose to play as a Miner, a Hunter, a Mercenary, or an Engineer. Each class plays slightly different (as far as weapons go). I would suggest starting with a class that seems more natural to you and then explore another class after. The level-up system is incredibly arduous, it takes forever for your character to level up so get ready to grind your heart out. Currently, there are 35 levels to grind through which opens a good amount of content right now if you do not mind the inherently repetitive nature of the game. If you are an RPG player though, this is nothing new to you. So, I don’t see it as a fault in the game at all. You can also explore the world freely. However, without being tied to any quest (to gain more XP than you would just killing animals) you will soon face enemies far beyond your level and therefore be unable to progress without getting more experience. This is a normality for most RPGs as well. The beauty of the MMO part is that you don’t have to go it alone. As you play, you will also be able to join up with different Factions. The faction system is in place so players can join different factions and then become allies or enemies of other players of the same or different faction. Here, you receive faction-specific quests, rewards, and gear from faction vendors. The Tech Side Of Things Despite using the modern and powerful Unreal Engine 4, Will to Live Online‘s graphics are pretty underwhelming and are more on par with Fallout 3. It’s not all bad, some aspects of them are up-to-par like shadows and some textures. However, character models, meshes, and environments are not up to par most of the time and display with a sort of low quality instead. The models of enemies and characters are mostly adequate. The rats and dogs could use some work. The animation for them is a bit old school as well. This inconsistency in quality does not help someone enjoy the atmosphere. Although, if you aren’t someone that needs current, up-to-date rendering, then this shouldn’t be that much of a hiccup. The sound system of Will to Live Online is pretty good quality. There are different sounds based upon whether you are in a closed environment or in an open one. For example, weapons sound a bit different when shooting in tunnels as opposed to outside. It’s nice to hear the rattle of guns off in the distance to signal people. Sometimes walking through a town you will hear laughter coming from a home and people talking (All in Russian, of course, but it is still nice to hear). The monster noises are not that impressive but it does give you a heads up that something saw you before you saw it. Speaking of the enemy AI, they are exactly what you would expect from an MMORPG, a chase and attack type of AI with little else. It made the game feel familiar even though its new. Overall Will to Live Online is a fun MMORPG with layers of story and a few things to really gripe about. It is exciting, difficult, and familiar. Some of the game’s elements have some charm and good ideas, but there are also issues with the game design that may prevent it from truly becoming what it wants to be.