Your Go-To Walkthrough Site for All Games and Apps - Game8

Once Human Review | There’s No Way This is Free-To-Play

86
Story
7
Gameplay
9
Visuals
10
Audio
7
Value for Money
10
Price:
free
Clear Time:
100 Hours
Once Human is a freak of nature by contemporary industry standards and I mean that in the best way. It’s a free-to-play game with great gameplay, smooth multiplayer, plenty of dedicated servers, and a very distinct visual style that adds character to its otherwise pedestrian premise. There might be something to be said about its questionable terms of service or its buggy release, but judging its quality as a game alone, Once Human sets a new standard for the free-to-play experience.

Once Human is an action-adventure survival MMO by Starry Studio that pits you against a world full of eldritch biomechanical abominations, read our review to see what it did well, what it didn't do well, and if it's worth buying.

Once Human Review Overview

What is Once Human?

Once Human is set in a post-apocalyptic world where an alien entity called Stardust has taken over human society. What were once humans, animals, and plants, have now mutated into terrifying and dangerous creatures called Deviations. With Deviations out and about, human survivors have grouped into factions. Some of these factions are worthwhile allies, some are outright evil, and some are complete lunatics.

You play as a Meta-Human who wakes up in the middle of nowhere, hungry, and with horrific Deviations all around you. As a Meta-Human, you can survive the contamination and use the power of Stardust. However, you’re not at all invincible as Deviations could still rip you apart, and other survivors could shoot you dead.

Discover the truth behind Stardust, learn its origins, and find out what it aims to accomplish. You are humanity’s last hope.

Once Human features:
 ⚫︎ 100+ gun blueprints across 7 categories with countless modifications for each
 ⚫︎ 100+ craftable items and building pieces
 ⚫︎ Massive multiplayer map filled with world bosses and scavenging areas
 ⚫︎ Fast-paced gun combat with resource gathering and looting mechanics
 ⚫︎ Dedicated PvE and PvP servers
 ⚫︎ Seasonal content cycle with free rewards each season

For more gameplay details, read everything we know about Once Human's gameplay and story.

Steam IconSteam Google Play IconGoogle Play App Store IconApp Store

Once Human Pros & Cons

Image

Pros Cons
Checkmark Budget-Friendly System Requirements
Checkmark Unique and Well-Implemented Seasonal Cycle
Checkmark Questionable Terms of Service
Checkmark Poorly Paced, High-Concept Story

Once Human Overall Score - 86/100

Once Human is a freak of nature by contemporary industry standards and I mean that in the best way. It’s a free-to-play game with great gameplay, smooth multiplayer, plenty of dedicated servers, and a very distinct visual style that adds character to its otherwise pedestrian premise. There might be something to be said about its questionable terms of service or its buggy release, but judging its quality as a game alone, Once Human sets a new standard for the free-to-play experience.

Once Human Story - 7/10

Once Human’s story isn’t one you’d expect for a survival MMO and it gets a lot of points for creativity. Unfortunately, a premise is only as great as its execution, and Once Human dropped the ball a few times with its narrative pacing and exposition. It’s a curse suffered by even the most story-driven survival MMOs, but that doesn’t mean that Once Human is off the hook.

Once Human Gameplay - 9/10

Once Human’s gameplay is solid, well-rounded, well-implemented, and most of all, lots of fun. The game’s base-building has plenty of quality-of-life features, as well as some of the best-looking building assets I’ve seen in a survival MMO. The third-person gunplay is crisp and responsive, and there’s barely any issue with the game’s multiplayer aspect. There’s nothing groundbreaking about it, but you won’t catch me complaining about basic game design implemented well.

Once Human Visuals - 10/10

Once Human’s visuals are certainly high-quality, but more important than that, they are decidedly unique. With its creative combination of nightmarish Lovecraftian horrors and anthropomorphized machinery from urban legends like Siren Head, there isn’t a vibe quite like this game’s. It’s a feast for the eyes and imagination, that’s for sure.

Once Human Audio - 7/10

If not for Once Human’s well-made but off-genre soundtrack, then this game’s overall audio quality would’ve taken a much larger hit from its atrocious voice acting. With line deliveries bordering on AI-generated voice-overs, much of the immersion and storytelling is lost in translation.

Once Human Value for Money - 10/10

Once Human’s content would be plenty for a game costing around $25-30, but this game is free to play. Of course, it’s going to be worth your money; you won’t be spending a cent unless you want to clear out its cosmetics store. As long as your PC can handle it, there’s no reason to not give this game a try. And even if it can’t, you can always try it on mobile.

Once Human Review: There’s No Way This is Free-To-Play

Image

I had the pleasure of playing and reviewing Once Human during its closed beta test and, while it didn’t exactly wow me then, I can safely say that it has vastly improved since. There’s still much to be said about what it didn’t improve—and even more about its terms of service—but I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s go through everything that Once Human has to offer: the good, the bad, and the questionable.

Let’s go through it in the order I listed, starting with one of the game’s better aspects: gameplay. Combat and survival mechanics are usually a survival MMO’s bread and butter, and it’s no different for Once Human. Those two make up the game’s core mechanics and they’re really pulling their weight with this one. The game’s base-building alone already makes it worth a try, so let’s go into detail as to why I hold it in such high regard. To put it simply, this game’s base-building is effective and eye-catching.

Image

The building prefabs snap together incredibly well, and the quality-of-life features in the building system make base building a breeze. I’m particularly fond of the "Flying Mode," which lets you control the camera freely while building, making it easy to reach those hard-to-access spots. The prefab duplication input is another highlight, allowing you to select a built prefab, sample it, and adjust your active blueprint accordingly. This makes building large structures made out of repeated prefab pieces a walk in the park.

While the absence of a world grid to snap the entire structure onto and the occasionally finicky territorial claim area could be considered drawbacks, these are minor and fixable issues. Overall, there's little to criticize about this game's base-building system.

In addition to the building system’s overall ease of use, the prefabs and the assets they house are well-crafted and perfectly suited to the game's surreal futuristic architecture. This ensures that your base won't just be a makeshift structure held together by sap and faith, but a truly customizable creation that highlights the best aspects of the game's visual design and your creativity.

Image

Moving on to the other main aspect of its gameplay, let's discuss Once Human's exploration and combat. Once Human is a third-person shooter and a pretty dynamic one at that. It features standard mechanics like aim-down-sights, sprints, and dodge rolls, but it also includes a variety of vertical traversal options such as gliders, ledge climbs, and vehicle controls. These options not only enhance exploration but also make the gunplay more engaging by introducing varied angles, ranges, and cover mechanics. While this depth mainly benefits PvP, as the Deviations remain mostly static except for bosses, the effort to keep both exploration and combat fresh is commendable.

Image

To round off this section about Once Human’s gameplay, let's talk about its crafting and progression. Once Human operates on a crafting tree progression system, where new bundles of buildable recipes are unlocked using an in-game currency called Ciphers. These are earned by leveling up or completing seasonal tasks, with player progression limited by how many Ciphers they can earn within a given period. While experience-based progression isn’t anything new, I appreciate that players have the agency to choose which recipes to unlock rather than having unlocks tied solely to player level. This allows players to focus on what they want to focus on, be it combat, base-building, crafting, or just exploring the map on their vehicle.

Image

Let’s move on to the game’s visuals, which is another of its better aspects. Once Human’s aesthetics and art direction are both rather unique, pulling design elements from urban legends, Lovecraftian horror, modern architecture, dark futurism, and surrealism in equal measure. All of these influences culminated in a game that "feels wrong" on many levels, both perceptible and imperceptible. There’s a sense of otherworldly unease across many of the game’s monster designs and story set pieces, conveying the vibes you’d expect from post-apocalypse of eldritch proportions.

As for the game’s shortcomings, there are quite a few, although none are surprising considering NetEase’s reputation. The initial release build was rather buggy, causing issues with the game’s servers, character creation, and base-building systems. I encountered a bug with the building system firsthand, which locked me into the building layer indefinitely.

Image

Additionally, the game has faced criticism for its oddly specific and invasive terms of service agreement, which demands nearly all your private information short of your social security number. The in-game chat was abuzz during my playtime, with many players calling it another "Day Before" crypto mining scam. While this concern may not directly impact the gameplay, it's something worth noting if privacy is a priority for you.

Continuing with the game's other shortcomings, its audio hasn't improved since the closed beta build. With voice-line deliveries ranging from bad to completely non-existent, I'd prefer playing with the voice-over turned all the way down. That said, the rest of the audio isn't bad—the game's soundtrack, especially the menu music, is quite good, albeit a bit off-genre.

Image

Overall, Once Human is a great free-to-play game with plenty of high-quality content and a distinct visual style. Its gameplay is well-rounded and genuinely fun, especially when played with friends. However, it falters in a few areas, particularly its audio and server-side quality control. Despite these flaws, it's a less-than-perfect but highly recommendable game for the discerning survival MMO player.

Pros of Once Human

Things Once Human Got Right
Checkmark Budget-Friendly System Requirements
Checkmark Unique and Well-Implemented Seasonal Cycle

Budget-Friendly System Requirements

Image

Despite its stunning visuals and spanning scope, Once Human’s system requirements are actually quite budget-friendly, mostly appealing to low-to-mid-tier systems. If you're looking for free-to-play multiplayer game that can run on a toaster, then this one's your best bet.

Unique and Well-Implemented Seasonal Cycle

Image

Once Human operates on a unique seasonal content cycle where servers are refreshed at the end of every season to make way for new content. To prevent the loss of player progress, players are given access to a unique personal server called "Eternaland", where they can build to their heart’s content using unique pieces and rewards gained during a season. This is a good way to introduce new content to the game and keep things fresh, even for veteran players with well-established player bases.

Cons of Once Human

Things That Once Human Can Improve
Checkmark Questionable Terms of Service
Checkmark Poorly Paced, High-Concept Story

Questionable Terms of Service

Image

Once Human's terms of service, and by extension NetEase's, has been a subject of debate among the game's earliest players, with many considering it overtly specific and invasive. Some have come to call it yet another "Day Before" crypto scam, although that much remains unproven. This isn't a hard con per se, but if your online privacy and information is something you'd rather keep to yourself, then maybe this game isn't the one for you.

Poorly Paced, High-Concept Story

Image

Once Human has a story that’s rather unique for a survival MMO, involving an otherworldly threat turning people into abominations. Survival is a matter of finding these abominations and eliminating them rather than finding rescue or establishing your dominion over an area. This is a good thing on paper, but Starry Studio didn’t do a good job of representing this high-concept premise through gameplay or even direct storytelling.

The game suffers from severe narrative pacing issues due to the nature of its core gameplay loop. Players are given free rein on how and when they tackle story missions, without as much as a scripted encounter to force them to move forward. While this is good for player agency, the game’s story suffers as a result. This is a fate suffered by most survival MMOs, although it’s particularly bad for Once Human because none of its characters are memorable and the dialogue writing is simply atrocious.

I appreciate the concept. It’s unique and stands to give the game its own vibe in a genre saturated by similar-looking and similar-sounding titles. That said, uniqueness on its own does not make for a great narrative.

Is Once Human Worth It?

It’s Free-to-Play and Worth Every Hour You Put Into It

Image

First and foremost, this game is free-to-play, so it has some innate value for your purchase and all you stand to lose is time. Free-to-play often denotes lower quality or less content, but that is decidedly not the case for Once Human. Sure, it’s a bit buggy at the moment and there’s a genuine concern regarding personal privacy, but if neither of those are deal-breakers for you, then this is definitely a game you should be playing.


Digital Storefronts
Steam IconSteam Google Play IconGoogle Play App Store IconApp Store
Price Free-to-Play

Once Human FAQ

Can I Make Another Character in Once Human?

Although each player was only allowed one character per account on release, the Once Human development team has since implemented multiple-character creation across different servers due to popular demand from the game’s first wave of players.

Can The Same Once Human Accounts Be Accessed Across Different Platforms?

According to the game’s developers, cross-platform support is available for Android and iOS players, allowing the same account to be accessed between those platforms. This is currently not applicable to Steam accounts due to the platform’s innate limitations.

You may also like...

null The Legend of Heroes: Trails Through Daybreak Review | A Great Trailblazer To A New Era
null Ark of Charon Review - Early Access | Charming and Challenging Journey of Resilience
null Night of the Dead Review | Endless Grind, Endless Fun
null The Day Before Review | It’s Real, But I Wish It Wasn’t

Once Human Product Information

Once Human Cover
Title ONCE HUMAN
Release Date July 9, 2024
Developer Starry Studio
Publisher Starry Studio
Supported Platforms PC (Steam), Mobile (Android, iOS)
Genre Action, Adventure, Shooting, Survival
Number of Players Massive Online Multiplayer
ESRB Rating RP
Official Website Once Human Website

Comments

slumnmets3 days

The treatment of advanced congestive heart failure in dogs and cats could be improved by the use of torsemide, a novel, and more potent diuretic than furosemide &lt;a href=<a href='https://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy</a> cialis 10mg&lt;/a&gt; Bill and Hillary had to work in tandem with National Security Advisor Sandy Berger to talk the brothers out of their hazelnut empire

MasonFor5 days

Γεια σου, ήθελα να μάθω την τιμή σας.

Invashy6 days

When plastic vials are used, the plastic is typically selected from the group consisting of cyclic olefin polymer COP plastic, cyclic olefin copolymer COC plastic, high density polyethylene plastic, and high density non nucleated polypropylene plastic &lt;a href=<a href='http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy</a> online cialis&lt;/a&gt; Aromatase inhibitors Letrozole work by reducing estrogen levels and causing shrinkage of the fibroid

extiskins6 days

Adults can get ear infections too, but they don t happen nearly as often as they do in children &lt;a href=<a href='http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy</a> cialis online 20mg&lt;/a&gt; Moreover, many toxic mechanisms related to DOX have been identified including serious damages in testis leading to an azoospermia in almost 100 of patients, one third of whom still have the disorder 5 years after the treatment 9

extiskins6 days

&lt;a href=<a href='http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy</a> cialis cheap&lt;/a&gt; Oral steroids, if used to treat a psoriatic arthritis flare, can temporarily worsen psoriasis

Gordonerori6 days

4 winds casino [url= <a href='https://www.alvarum.com/acheterstilnox' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://www.alvarum.com/acheterstilnox</a> ] <a href='https://www.alvarum.com/acheterstilnox' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://www.alvarum.com/acheterstilnox</a> [/url] hard rock hotel &amp; casino punta cana &lt;a href= <a href='http://www.1892east.com/stilfr.html' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://www.1892east.com/stilfr.html</a> &gt; <a href='http://www.1892east.com/stilfr.html' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://www.1892east.com/stilfr.html</a> &lt;/a&gt; casino royale yacht

Paypete6 days

&lt;a href=<a href='https://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy</a> real cialis online&lt;/a&gt; Mario IQsSExVzxq 6 18 2022

Anthonyfroto7 days

[url=<a href='http://studentski.net/redirect?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://studentski.net/redirect?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]</a> [url=<a href='https://es.xhamster22.com/exit.php?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://es.xhamster22.com/exit.php?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]</a> [url=<a href='http://forum.goldenclone.com/ru/link.php?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://forum.goldenclone.com/ru/link.php?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]</a> [url=<a href='http://xmhxxy.com.xx3.kz/go.php?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://xmhxxy.com.xx3.kz/go.php?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]</a> [url=<a href='http://www.cssdrive.com/?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://www.cssdrive.com/?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/url]</a> [url=<a href='https://beyaz.az/go.php?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://beyaz.az/go.php?url=https://virgilvan-dijk-br.biz]virgil[/</a>

Invashy7 days

The data which exist on IUI need to be interpreted with caution given the biases in promoting more expensive IVF treatments 1, 2 &lt;a href=<a href='http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;comprar' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;comprar</a> cialis online&lt;/a&gt; 30 days after that in rehab learning to walk all over again

BryanImmab7 days

Hello! Do you want to become the best SEO specialist and link builder or do you want to outpace your competitors? [b]Premium base for XRumer[/b] $119/one-time Get access to our premium database, which is updated monthly! The database contains only those resources from which you will receive active links - from profiles and postings, as well as a huge collection of contact forms. Free database updates. There is also the possibility of a one-time purchase, without updating the databa

BryanImmab7 days

Hello! Do you want to become the best SEO specialist and link builder or do you want to outpace your competitors? [b]Premium base for XRumer[/b] $119/one-time Get access to our premium database, which is updated monthly! The database contains only those resources from which you will receive active links - from profiles and postings, as well as a huge collection of contact forms. Free database updates. There is also the possibility of a one-time purchase, without updating the databa

BryanImmab7 days

Hello! Do you want to become the best SEO specialist and link builder or do you want to outpace your competitors? [b]Premium base for XRumer[/b] $119/one-time Get access to our premium database, which is updated monthly! The database contains only those resources from which you will receive active links - from profiles and postings, as well as a huge collection of contact forms. Free database updates. There is also the possibility of a one-time purchase, without updating the databa

BryanImmab7 days

Hello! Do you want to become the best SEO specialist and link builder or do you want to outpace your competitors? [b]Premium base for XRumer[/b] $119/one-time Get access to our premium database, which is updated monthly! The database contains only those resources from which you will receive active links - from profiles and postings, as well as a huge collection of contact forms. Free database updates. There is also the possibility of a one-time purchase, without updating the databa

BryanImmab7 days

Hello! Do you want to become the best SEO specialist and link builder or do you want to outpace your competitors? [b]Premium base for XRumer[/b] $119/one-time Get access to our premium database, which is updated monthly! The database contains only those resources from which you will receive active links - from profiles and postings, as well as a huge collection of contact forms. Free database updates. There is also the possibility of a one-time purchase, without updating the databa

BryanImmab7 days

Hello! Do you want to become the best SEO specialist and link builder or do you want to outpace your competitors? [b]Premium base for XRumer[/b] $119/one-time Get access to our premium database, which is updated monthly! The database contains only those resources from which you will receive active links - from profiles and postings, as well as a huge collection of contact forms. Free database updates. There is also the possibility of a one-time purchase, without updating the databa

Smelrysem7 days

Only take the diclofenac product prescribed by your doctor and do not switch to a different diclofenac product unless your doctor says that you should &lt;a href=<a href='http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;online' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;online</a> cialis&lt;/a&gt;

Invashy8 days

&lt;a href=<a href='http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;cialis' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;cialis</a> online no prescription&lt;/a&gt; levitra tretinoin uk online We must remain on guard against any unacceptable rises in interest rates, Miller said on Wednesday

Smelrysem9 days

It follows that if a first strike is launched against the storage depots, little will be achieved &lt;a href=<a href='http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;buy</a> cialis online united states&lt;/a&gt; typhimurium is coated with ubiquitinated proteins detected and bound by p62, which co localizes with LC3 and LAMP1 59

extiskins9 days

Given the variable duration half life of furosemide and the unpredictable rate of absorption of many oral diuretics, further research will be necessary to determine whether the current results are applicable to diuretics other than intravenous bumetanide &lt;a href=<a href='http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;legit' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>http://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;legit</a> cialis online&lt;/a&gt;

axivayi9 days

Hyperphosphataemia meetings, canoeing him: [URL=<a href='https://rrhail.org/product/antidiab/' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://rrhail.org/product/antidiab/</a>]antidiab[/URL] [URL=<a href='https://primerafootandankle.com/assal/' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://primerafootandankle.com/assal/</a>]generic assal online[/URL] assal [URL=<a href='https://primerafootandankle.com/apo-sulfatrim/' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://primerafootandankle.com/apo-sulfatrim/</a>]apo sulfatrim[/URL] [URL=<a href='https://mrindiagrocers.com/item/aroxat/' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://mrindiagrocers.com/item/aroxat/</a>]low price aroxat[/URL] [URL=<a href='<a href='https://1488familymedicinegroup.com/drug/a' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://1488familymedicinegroup.com/drug/a</a>ticef/' target='_black' rel='nofollow'><a href='https://1488familymedicinegroup.com/drug/a' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://1488familymedicinegroup.com/drug/a</a>ticef/</a>]aticef[/URL] [URL=<a href='https://ucnewark.com/ashvagandha/' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://ucnewark.com/ashvagandha/</a>]best pharma ashvagandha[/URL] [URL=<a href='https://1488familymedicinegroup.com/drug/a' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://1488familymedicinegroup.com/drug/a</a>

Invashy9 days

&lt;a href=<a href='https://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;cialis' target='_black' rel='nofollow'>https://cialis.lat/discover-the-best-prices-for-cialis&gt;cialis</a> tablets for sale&lt;/a&gt; Read the abstract of A randomized, double blind, placebo controlled trial of oxybutynin Oxy for hot flashes HF ACCRU study SC 1603

Game8 Ads Createive