Auto Assault Profile Preview - Mutants

In the third and final preview of Auto Assault's three races, we take a look at the mystical mutants.

The postapocalyptic world of Auto Assault isn't a safe place. After an alien contamination renders the surface inhospitable, the human survivors discover they're sharing the world with two new races...and all three factions are now locked in a battle for survival. In this upcoming action-heavy online role-playing game, you'll create a character based on one of the three races and strap into a heavily modified vehicle to battle it out on the highways and byways of the wasteland. Think of Mad Max and you're not too far off. Of course, it's not just combat in Auto Assault, as there will be plenty of time for social interaction with other players when you're hanging out in town to get quests, upgrade and repair vehicles, and more.

In the third and final profile preview of the game's races, we take a look at the mutants. The mutants are the outcasts of the Auto Assault world, but they can easily stand toe-to-toe with the humans and the biomeks. You can read more about them below, as well as refer to our earlier previews for looks at the two other races. Auto Assault is scheduled to launch later this year, but please keep in mind that details are subject to change, as the game is continually balanced and tested.

The mutants are the tough outcasts of the Auto Assault world, and they're not to be trifled with.

Mutants

Before "the alien contamination," the people generally referred to as mutants came largely from the third world. These impoverished people had the least protection from the environment, almost no access to technology, and no chance at a life in the "safety" of the arks. Even those who had not mutated were left outside to die when the humans pummeled the world's surface with their nuclear arsenal. Those who survived the night were dramatically changed from their original human forms. (Mutants use the word "changed" with a sort of divine reverence, whereas other races just use the word "mutated.")

Now, perhaps in defiance of the past, they like to parade their differences in front of their enemies...especially the humans. They adorn themselves with bizarre, possibly alien, artifacts to appear more frightening to their biomek and human enemies. Mutants consider pure humans to be inherently evil and feel they are "irredeemable," since they so obviously resist the changes the land has blessed them with. As for the biomeks, the "changed" harbor a deep resentment of them as their historical oppressors and find the biomek approach to evolution grotesque, an affront to the changed land. Seemingly surrounded on all sides by nonbelievers who would oppress them or, worse, stamp them out completely, the mutants have no choice but to turn to war to defend their way of life.

Mutants revel in the bizarre environmental conditions with religious zeal. As a result, they've developed interesting talents with surviving mutated flora and fauna. When augmented by a strong energy source, some mutant skills can cause devastating effects seemingly out of thin air. Many of their basic construction materials now incorporate elements of the contamination, resulting in almost mystical regenerative capabilities.

Mutant terminology, for the state of the world, reflects their religious alignment. They generally refer to the contamination as "the spirit," believing it is a general manifestation of the divine that came to make the planet a paradise for the mutant people, known as "the tribes of the changed." Thus, the contamination and its effects are generally revered as holy. The liquid form of this contamination is referred to as "the blood of the spirit," or more commonly, just "the blood," and it's used in everything from construction to religious rituals in their culture.

The mutant hazard mode is a devastating phase-shift effect that uses the driver's consciousness and the contaminated atmosphere. The vehicle starts to channel in unstable negative energy in a radius. Meanwhile, the driver's consciousness becomes one with the surrounding contamination that permeates the air and ground. Although the vehicle is disabled, the player is able to focus his being as a roving entity, called a "phaseform." This phaseform radiates a very small radius, low-damage contamination area-of-effect aura that moves very slowly. The entity can burst across very short distances, as well as rip space to unleash a periodic massive-damage-contamination area-of-effect blast on any enemies nearby. The speed burst and damage rip require a massive power surge and emotional investment, so the effect can only be used a few times before totally overwhelming the driver and sending the player back to vehicle mode.

Mutant buildings actually have the ability to heal themselves.

Hazard mode is controlled via strange artifacts installed in vehicles, termed "loci." A locus is a mysterious, glowing green ball, framed in bloodsteel, that's been painted a color to indicate the locus' primary function.

Mutants also have the following racial advantages:

Natural Regeneration
Mutant techniques of infusing contamination in building materials has an interesting side effect. If damaged, these living compounds actually regenerate to their original casting forms through a quasi-oxidation process with contamination found naturally in the atmosphere and environment. This is like a reverse rust, restoring the material instead of deteriorating it.

Contamination Friendly
Mutants were born of the contamination and thus benefit from its use and immersion in it. Mutants also tap into the contamination resident in the planet's atmosphere for certain special abilities.

Wraithphase
Mutant hazard mode is a terrifying wraithlike presence that's controlled by the projected conscious of a mutant character. In reality, this presence is a microtear of the space-time fabric due to overexciting contamination particles in the atmosphere. This requires a massive power augmentation to accomplish, as well as complete focus from the mutant performing it. Thus, while it's active, the mutant's vehicle is disabled.

Offensive Specialty
Contamination (Spirit)

Defensive Specialty
Contamination (Spirit)

Character Classes

Champion
Champions are the front-line religious warriors for the mutants. Champions are trained to commune with "ursaic spirit" power, giving them bearlike tendencies and contamination skills. They live life by a simple philosophy: The biggest gun wins. Champion skills include urasic thunder, which taps into the spirit totem of the mutant bear tribe to temporarily improve the combat abilities of nearby allies, and sprit shells, which enhances weapon munitions for a short time.

Class Traits

  • Heavy assault vehicles
  • Front-line combat role
  • Can use all types of weapons and armors
  • Combat is a primary focus; tech is a secondary focus

The mutant bloodspeeder packs a potent punch.

Shaman
Mutants look to their shamans for both spiritual and physical healing. Shamans bond intensely with the "botanic spirit," signifying growth and mutation. In combat, a shaman can manipulate the contamination to almost magical effects. Shaman skills include bramplephase, which covers a vehicle with phaseformed brambles that act as armor, and origeneration, which stimulates the blood throwing through nearby mutant vehicles, causing it to repair itself.

Class Traits

  • Combat utility vehicles
  • Support and trapping roles
  • Useful for indirect combat and battlefield repairs
  • Tech is a primary focus; theory is a secondary focus

Archon
Archons are the elite religious leaders of the mutants. They have a miraculous command over mutated environments, often creating wraithlike entities seemingly out of thin air to do their bidding. Archon skills include phaseform crawler, which spawns a phase-shifted, mutated crawler creature to attack enemies in battle, and breath of god, which lets archons manipulate the environment to create a massive shock wave.

Class Traits

  • Sporty command vehicles
  • Command role
  • Brings leadership abilities, combat experience, and summoned numbers to the battlefield
  • Theory is a primary focus; perception is a secondary focus

A mutant phase buggy in action.

Avenger
Avengers are the avenging angels of mutant culture. They link themselves to the "insecta spirit," giving them an unnatural affinity with mutant insects and the like. Avengers are experts at blending in with their environments. Avenger skills include chameleon, which causes a vehicle to phaseform and become invisible, and collar carrion, which summons a swarm of insects that can chew through nonmutant targets.

Class Traits

  • Light duty vehicles
  • Special ops role
  • Masters of hit-and-run stealth tactics and creating chaos
  • Perception is a primary focus; combat is a secondary focus

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