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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Aquaman "Mod" Game

This is a screenshot from an online mod game created and designed by long time F.O.A.M.er Benton Grey.

I'll mention this right up front--not being a gamer, in any way, I have a hard time understanding what this thing was that Benton had created. So I've decided to step out of the way and let Benton explain it in his own words:

A long time ago I picked up a game I'd never heard of in the bargain bin, and it turned out to be the greatest superhero game of all time, Freedom Force. While the game itself was fantastic, what made it so enduring was the ability of the fan community to create their own art assets that would allow players to bring their favorite characters, everyone from Batman to Neo, into the game. I saw that there was limitless potential to tell one's own stories in Freedom Force, and I had stories to tell.

All my life I've loved the characters and the world that DC comics created, but like many people who grew up reading comics from the spinner racks in their local stores, the Modern Age leaves me cold. I find that I don't even recognize the heroes that I loved as a kid, and who still interest me today.

For a long time now I’ve been thinking, what would it be like if I could re-write DC history, guide the seminal characters from their beginnings to endings that they actually deserve. No Emerald Twilight for Hal, no musical coffins for deceased characters, one long, single-authored storyline. Unless the editors at DC just happen to choose my name out of a phone book and say 'Here, run the company for us,' I’m going to have to go with the next best thing. So, I've spent the last several years putting together the DC Universe in Freedom Force vs. The Third Reich: skins, meshes, herofiles, my own voicepacks, and a whole host of campaigns that utilize more DC characters than you can shake a stick at.

For those of you who haven't had much experience with modified PC games, that translates into art assets (the representations of various characters and places that you can interact with in the game, all of which are created by members of the Freedom Force community much more talented than I). It also means that I did the work of actually incorporating a huge portion of DC's pantheon into the game. I set characters up completely, from big details, like the types of powers they have, to minor touches, like what their biography says if you look them up in the game.

Have you ever wanted to see Aquaman trash that loud-mouthed Lobo? Now's your chance! The games come with a sandbox mode that'll allow you to match up just about any DC character you can imagine and pit them against each other. Are you curious to see if the Justice League could trounce both the old and new Teen Titans in a fight? Set them up and see who's the last team standing!

That's not all, folks; then you've got your crowning achievement: three different campaigns (or groups of missions with storylines you can play through) involving some of DC's big players such as Batman, Hawkman/Atom, and even the beginnings of an Aquaman campaign. Our favorite sea king plays a central role in the JLA campaign and his entire supporting cast, from Vulko to Mera, are here as well, including his rogue's gallery, which has been somewhat augmented by myself.

I hope that some of you will check out my efforts, and even join me in telling stories in the universe I've created. It is worth noting that, while I draw pretty heavily from the Silver and Bronze Ages, you may find that my versions of these characters don't match up exactly with any published version. That is because I am trying to smooth out some of the rough edges, so I've done some editing on the DCU as I've translated it to Freedom Force. I hope you like my interpretation!

Freedom Force can be purchased here for a measly five bucks here. Be warned, this mod encompasses a universe, and as such, it is not small. Unpacked it clocks in at right around 3.5 gigs."

You can find Benton's game over at his blog, The Greylands.


Wings1295 said...

Seems amazingly cool, even if I don't grasp the whole thing. Talk about dedication!

Wil Radcliffe said...

I have the original Freedom Force game. It is very cool. You can customize your own original characters, create your favorite Marvel or DC characters, or download the skins and stats for the characters from other players web sites. I downloaded a couple of the mods as well, a pretty cool Fantastic Four one. But this one looks much more epic than any other I've seen. I may have to dust off my old Freedom Force game and reinstall it just to check this out.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this Rob! I hope that some of your readers enjoy the mod! I just found out that the download is missing a file, but I'll have it uploaded this afternoon.