As far as RPG elements go, the most obvious is the 4 selectable character classes: Berserker (tank), Soldier (support), Hunter (nuker), and Siren (utility). Each has its own special skill to be used actively, as well as 3 tiered specialization trees with passive attributes that supplement your tactics. You level up by gaining experience points for killing enemies and completing tasks, quests, and challenges (achievements), at which time you are awarded one skill point to allocate. In addition, by continuously using a type of weapon, you build up your proficiency. Higher levels of proficiency will give you bonuses to damage, accuracy, reload speed, or rate of fire for all weapons of that category.
Treasure hunting is also a major component of the game; you search containers scattered all over the place for bits of loot such as cash or ammunition, and you will find chests with weapons and other items that are usually guarded. Borrowing from the MMO formula, the rarity of a weapon, and thus its power, is indicated by its color, ranging from white to green to blue to purple, and so on. Storage capacity upgrades for items and ammo can be earned via quests and purchased, respectively.
Disposable vehicles are introduced early in the game and acquired at one of many “Catch-a-Ride” stations located throughout the landscape. They are very useful for transportation, as well as extra firepower. Well, there is only one kind of vehicle, a sort of desert buggy, but you can choose the color and whether to arm it with a machine gun or rocket launcher. If you prefer to squish your prey, road-kills are nearly instant, regardless of how strong the enemy is. However, the impact damages the car and you are rewarded much less XP than if you were to defeat the foe on foot. Like the shield, the car’s “health” will regenerate over time when not in combat.
You will encounter many enemy types in Pandora, mainly bandits, but also several types of beasts, bugs, and birds. They emerge from spawn points (huts, burrows, etc.) and reappear after being killed a while later, even if you don’t leave the area. The game’s brand of humor permeates their ranks, as evidenced by minibosses having the title “Badass” and later “Badmutha” instead of “Elite.” Mutant Midget Psychos let out a high-pitched shriek as they run toward you, and then fall on their butt when they fire a shotgun. Fans of Morrowind may have terrible flashbacks when they see the airborne menace called Rakk, which bear an uncanny resemblance to the infamous Cliff Racer.