Something Morpheus never told Neo is how honkin' BIG it is! ;-) The Matrix Online (MxO) recommends 10GB of free hard drive space to install. Ghidrah, my poor beleaguered PC, was in no position to handle that much data dumped on a single partition, so it took a late night of deleting files, shuffling data around, and ultimately working with Partition Magic to have sufficient room to cram it in.
And oh, is it worth it.
If you don't already know, the game is the continuation of the story, and picks up not long after Matrix Revolutions ends. The events in the game are considered "officially" part of the Matrix universe, which I think is pretty cool. :-)
There are three main organizations competing- the machines, the exiles (the rogue programs led by the Merovingian), and Zion. The game takes place entirely within the Matrix, and the players are all "redpills", working for the organization of their choice. You form alliances, do kung-fu, compile code into abilities and items, utilize viruses and other programs, and generally shoot the hell out of things. It's beautiful.
From a technology standpoint the game is slick as all get-out. (Rereading that sentence, I can tell that I've been watching FireFly. ;-) ) More interesting, however, is the culture that's growing up around it. There's an impressive user community out there. There are plenty of fan sites and discussion boards, the larger factions have their own well-developed web sites, a "newspaper" (well, sorta) and there's even an internet radio station that broadcasts "from the Matrix" called Radio Free Zion. They do live events within the game, but the music makes it well worth checking out even if you have no intention of playing. I was hooked on it before I even installed the game.
A couple of interesting points about the game:
1) The latest update adds "radio" functionality, so you can listen to .mp3s, CDs, or any internet radio station (like RFZ!), and control it without leaving the game.
2) The messaging system in the game is actually based on AIM, which means that it's possible to chat with people who in the Matrix using any AIM client. Just send to [charactername]@thematrixonline.com.
Speaking of which, here are the characters I've created so far, along with the server each lives on. I'll be rolling up characters for the other servers soon, if only as placeholders. If you end up jacking in, give me a ring!
Datan0de - Iterator
GenericUser - Regression
Kr0bar - Enumerator-Hostile
Kry0 - Method
Catch 'ya on the inside, coppertops! ;-)