Well, I finally got that PlayNC game up and running. It wasn't worth the effort. The graphics are poor, the game play is stuttery, the back story is depressing, the user interface is baroque, the powers are cliche, the equipment is algorithmic, the maps are unimaginative, the missions are poorly designed, and the game crashed on me the second time I tried to play it.
The graphics, game play and crashing may be related to my system, but I'm afraid the rest of the issues I have with the game are systemic. I may try it again since I have until Saturday on my free week, but I'd really like to find something else.
Foxfier mentioned World of Warcraft, but for some reason the fantasy scenario just doesn't appeal to me in 3D gaming. Maybe it's because I don't think it can possibly match up against Nethack. Maybe it's because the 3D games that I've enjoyed most over the years have been Sci-Fi oriented: Duke Nukem 3D, Dark Forces & sequals, Half-Life & sequels, Unreal & sequel, Prey, Halo & sequels. Other settings such as Id's horror games and the plethora of WWII games were OK, but not as good. Then there was Far Cry, which was really good but only remotely Sci Fi.
By the way, isn't it about time to drop the zombies? I mean, how cliche can you get? Other than the Dark Forces games, a couple of second-tier games whose names I don't recall, and (some of) the WWII games, I think every first-person shooter I've ever played has you fighting against some form of grotesquely modified humans who have been taken over and rebuilt into some zombie-like creature. The zombies are the easily the least attractive feature of both the Half-Life series and the Halo series. Enough with the zombies already. I'm thoroughly sick of them.