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The hybrid Media experiment: Defiance

Defiance is an ambitions project by Trion & the SyFy network to provide an online MMO experience that is also tied into a television series


On Monday, April 15th an interesting hybrid between television and online gaming will be on full display: Defiance the Syfy Network's episodic television show and Defiance the MMOG third-person shooter by Trion Games.

Defiance is set on a future Earth that has been terraformed and destroyed by alien species. In both the game and the series, aliens will be seen acting for and against humans as each try to survive on this new version of Earth.

Defiance the Game

The game version of Defiance launched on April 2, 2013 across all major platforms and through the Steam online store. This marks one of the few times that AAA MMO launched in both the PC and Console markets and provides the opportunity for cross-platform play, if the console makers will ever allow it.

Console players can participate through their respective XBox or PlayStation accounts online accounts. Some local hard disk storage will be a necessity to accomodate patches and downloadable content. PC players will need to have an active Trion accunt, internet access and approximately 15 gigabytes of available hard disk space. The PC system requirements are pretty average for a DirectX 9 game, however some players with older computers may suffer from FPS stuttering due to limited in-game graphical settings.

Defiance's game play follows most standard MMO conventions. Players begin with the choice of origins, instead of classes, and are thrust into the terraformed world of Earth, in the area surrounding the San Francisco Bay. All players are "Ark-hunters," which are people who search for technology that originates from wrecked and destroyed star ships falling from orbit. Game play is from a third-person perspective and most resembles a shooter-style of gameplay more than a traditional MMO tab-target focused design.

Defiance the Show

The upcoming Syfy Network version of Defiance has yet to premier (at the time of this writing). However, the network has backed the new series with a significant amount of advertising, including the release of the first 13 minutes of the show's premier episode. The show is said to follow the exploits of a character named Joshua Nolan. Nolan is a survivor from the human and alien war who returned home, to a town called Defiance (located in the ruins of St. Louis), to serve as a "Lawgiver." Nolan's job will have him interacting with both humans and aliens alike as each attempt to survive in the new world.

The most exciting aspect, of this new-hybrid series, is the chance to see action, characters, and changes experienced in the game world be repeated across television screens. The developers have expressed an interest in using the experiences and outcomes from the game world in developing storylines. The possibilities are endless.

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