I'm only level 7 so far, but definitely noticing what you're talking about. It feels like you're just being moved from instance to instance (ie, small areas) in a linear progression. Maybe I'm still in the WoW-mindset after all my years with that game, but it hardly feels like a MMO so far. Maybe someone who's further along can shed some light?
All these details sounds just awesome, especially how big they made the world (at least for a GTA game). I think it was Polygon's preview that said that the map is "three times bigger than Red Dead Redemption".
And with the added sea exploration...man, my hopes are soaring high with this game. If Microsoft / Sony want to see some serious cash coming their way they'll announce a next-gen version at E3, heh.
Hey, remember that XCOM FPS that was shown on E3 2010 and was then never heard from again? Well it seems it's very much alive, is now called The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, and has abandoned the FPS format for a third-person squad-like format (I'm thinking Mass Effect-ish). And apparently it's being released on August 20th (August 23rd in the UK)! 2K Marin, who made BioShock 2, are developing it, with 2K Games publishing. Here's a live-action teaser:
Kotaku ran an interview with Creative Director Morgan Gray.
He called the Bureau a *JARGON ALERT* "third-person, squad-based tactical combat expression of the core pillars of the XCOM franchise, which we define as team, tactics, technology, tools, terror, tension."
"It's pretty hardcore," Gray told me. "We're not trying to make a hyper-accessible game. We're trying to keep XCOM tied to its roots as a game that demands skill. Some people might say 'ahh, that's hard.' Hard's not the same. It's a game that requires you to use your brains and your bullets to win. Picture a modern, small-unit tactical combat game set in the '60s with technology that NASA should've made back then and your opposition are aliens.. That's what we're shooting for."
As @LukePlunkett points out, the fact that The Bureau: XCOM Whatever was reannounced 4 months prior to release is probably not a good sign. Especially considering that the game has been in on-off development since 2005. I will say that The Bureau's live-action trailer is quite surprisingly the best I've seen in recent years. Easily so.
More news are coming soon. Are people hyped over the change of plans? Indifferent?