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Video Game / Auto Assault

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"The road to hell is paved with good intentions. What road will you take?"

Auto Assault was a Vehicular Combat MMORPG developed by Net Devil and published by NC Soft for the PC in April of 2006.

In 2030, alien craft drop terraformation pods on Earth, unleashing horrific contamination that kills untold millions, but changes a rare few.

The Mutants are regarded as a plague and herded into internment camps. Scientists harness some of the technology behind the alien pods, creating Deflector Shields and other devices. In the face of expanding mutant populations and widespread breakdown in law and order, the world's governments combine in order to preserve their power and society, eventually becoming a massive corporate entity called Hestia Corp. They create biomechanical armies, immune to contamination, to combat the growing Mutant threat. The "Biomeks" are effective against the Mutants, now united under a single banner, in the short term, but Hestia ultimately deems them a failure and enacts a final solution. They put a select few scientists, military officials and other VIPs in underground arks and seal themselves underground, while simultaneously unleashing every nuclear, biological and chemical weapon they have on the surface in the hopes of totally sterilizing it.


Of course, things didn't go as planned. 800 years later, humanity reemerges from underground exile expecting a parking lot and instead finds a nightmare. The Mutants have survived, as have the Biomeks, who were extremely resentful about being abandoned and nuked. Countless other rogue groups and independent individuals are out there too, as are scattered alien forces and nasty mutated wildlife. Open war breaks out between the three major factions but soon settles into unstable peace broken up by small-scale skirmishes involving super-tough Weaponized cars, trucks, motorcycles, and the occasional tank.

Player characters took the role of a freelance operative from one of these three factions, fighting against the other two and the various hostile elements inhabiting the "Central Wasteland", as it was called. As the player progressed through the game and moved closer towards Ground Zero, more of the Back Story was revealed, along with the truth behind the aliens and their arrival on earth.


Due to "insufficient numbers of subscribers" (Rumor had it that less than a hundred people were playing at the time), the game shut down in 2007. Attempts by various parties to pick up the slack were denied, as were NetDevil's attempts to buy the rights back from NCSoft. Efforts by some players to revive the game with a private server continue.

Auto Assault provides examples of:

  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Temper NET, a massive security network designed alongside the Biomeks to maintain civil order while the Biomeks combated the Mutant threat militarily. It grew and evolved of its own accord, eventually deciding that the only way to ensure order was to exterminate all organic life. The system assimilates all technology it comes across with Borg-like efficiency.
  • All Bikers Are Hell's Angels: The Riders of the Apocalypse gang, albeit with much more advanced bikes.
  • Attack Drone: Used liberally by Humans and Biomeks, but also some NPC groups like Temper NET.
  • BFG
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: The head of INC.
  • Car Fu: Oh, so very much. Aided by the fact that you could equip your car with a "melee" weapon, namely, spiked bumpers or something similar.
  • Cybernetics Eat Your Soul: Not everyone is receptive to Biomek augmentations. Some of those that weren't had their minds reject the augmentations, turning them into burnt-out husks the Biomeks called "Derelicts", suitable for only the most rudimentary tasks and largely kept out of the way so they didn't hurt anyone.
  • Cyborg: The Biomeks, of course.
  • Damage-Sponge Boss: Biomek cars didn't have anything fancy like Deflector Shields or a Healing Factor. They just had stupidly large amounts of health. More to the point of the trope, a lot of the bosses were like this.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: There was literally no penalty for getting your car blown up except the time you spent sitting on a repair pad waiting to get back into the action. Which was often.
  • Deflector Shields: Found on all human vehicles, structures and even personal armor, part of what kept them free of contamination. In-game, Human players had an extra, regenerating layer of hit-points on top of their car's base health.
  • Dirty Cop: The forces of THE LAW
  • Dreadlock Rasta: The Zendigs, a bunch of dreadlock-wearing wasteland hippies who rejected Human authority and had a close-to-earth way of life, involving making colorful dyes and really tasty burgers. They were nonetheless very friendly to Human players.
  • The Engineer: The Human Engineer class, obviously, but also the Mutant Shaman and Biomek Constructor. Each tended to drive utility vehicles like vans or semis. They also acted as The Medic, having various abilities that healed other vehicles.
  • Grey-and-Gray Morality: Biomeks convert you, Mutants transform you, and Humans enslave you. Which side sounds more merciful?
  • Healing Factor: Mutant cars could regenerate their health.
  • Hollywood CB: The entire CB'er faction.
  • Limit Break: "Hazard Mode", obtained at level 40. After dishing out or taking a sufficient level of damage, Biomek vehicles could transform into a Humongous Mecha, Mutant vehicles could project a contaminated "Phase Ghost", and Human vehicles could Reverse Polarity on their shields and call down an ion blast on their position. Originally only the Biomeks had a Hazard Mode, but response from testers was so postitive that an equivalent ability was given to the other two factions.
  • Mega-Corp: Hestia Corp, which as of the game's setting represents what's left of the old order. Also INC, a neutral group that provides transportation and rescue services to all three factions via their ubiquitous yellow VTOL aircraft in exchange for being left alone.
  • Military Mashup Machine: Temper NET often sent these after players.