The game is set a persistent world where players need to cooperate against five AI-controlled tribes. There is no player-versus-player element, but obnoxious players can be removed using a special tool and assisted by a vote. The main gameplay is a combination of strategy (building and maintaining a base) and action (first-person shooter gameplay). Players need to establish a settlement, defend it against the enemy tribes and take out the other tribes' cities in the process.
Tokens are the most important elements to the game. By gathering these and returning them to the base, new abilities can be unlocked. Some of these are related to the strategy elements, such as constructing radio towers, turrets or setting up forcefields or wiring power, while others are tied directly to the players, such as new weapons or the ability to dive. There are also tools to alter the environment in real time, by digging tunnels, constructing hills or destroying parts of the environment. These changes are permanent and affect all players, but all constructing or landscape shaping can only be done in the vicinity of the monolith that marks the players' own settlement. Whenever an enemy's settlement is destroyed, the members start rebuilding it elsewhere and the same option is given to the players. The world design is often updated with new areas, items and abilities and there is a constant day and night cycle. Tokens can be found in the free world, inside the bases of enemy tribes or only in specific areas.
The player has four slots to store tools and using these requires a certain amount of power. Certain constructions can also be accessed from a distance, such as radio towers or teleportation points that can be activated. Enemy infrastructure can be hacked or interrupted, which is often needed to prevent enemy artillery from bombing the settlement to smithereens. When dying the player respawns immediately. Players can chat to each other through text, but there is also a permanent TeamSpeak server for voice chat.
The game has a distinct visual look where the vivid colours seem smeared as to resemble impressionist paintings. Most of the game is constructed using procedural generation techniques.
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