The newest company under Bethesda’s wing is Battlecry Studios making Battlecry. The game pits two factions, the Royal Marines and the Cossacks, against one another. I got some hands on time with this game at QuakeCon 2014, and it is the one game that I just want to keep going back to. It provides quick and satisfying combat, diverse classes, and a beautiful world to kill people with style. The game’s first public debut has gone on along with a couple inaugural tournaments. From what I can tell, this will be a new contender for some great esport action. The section of the game being shown was just a single multi-player session with only one map available. We also had only the option of 1 of 3 playable classes with two additional ones not available for play yet. Each character has three special moves that have a timed recharge and if used properly can dominate the battlefield. If you choose to save your adrenaline then you can use an ultimate special ability and unleash hell on your opponents. Seriously, you kill everyone if you aren’t stupid with your character. Adrenaline can also be used for sprinting and such, but in most cases it seems more beneficial to save it for the ultimate if you’re looking to score kills. Enjoy the trailer below: http://youtu.be/AjbY271qrw0
The game’s map was a good size and provided multiple areas of opportunity to demolish your enemies. The one played was a village with a central area, with a large building and gaping hole in the ground nearby, where most of the fighting would occur. For quick escapes you’ll find jump ramps that will shoot you across the map, grapple points to zip over to another ledge, or a lift to get up to the next floor. While most players go towards the central area, it is wise to explore the fringe sections of the level as you might find a lone stragglers to pick off. There will also be a couple hidden areas laid throughout the maps that will allow for good vantage points and flanking opportunities. I used one in the back of the level and found a lift to take me behind the enemy team and scored a couple kills. The large hole near the middle, named The Fracture, is pretty easy to avoid, but if you evade the wrong way, you may end up killing yourself.
Enforcer: Basically this unit is the warrior or tank kind of class as he deals a good amount of damage. Their sword can also transform into a shield to block ranged attacks and close attacks, giving some defensive actions to this character. You’ll find yourself able to take down almost any other class if you are smart. Running and slashing may get a couple kills, but mixing your abilities and blocking sometimes will allow you to dominate the battlefield. You’ll run into trouble with other enforcers or at range from the Archer, but staying with your team will prevent you from running into too many issues.
Tech Archer: The classic Archer character. You can do some serious damage to the enemy from afar with your scoped attack. I feel like they may have trouble killing an enemy without help, but as long as you stay out of sight and keep firing you’ll do fine. This class can provide great support and you’ll probably rack up a lot of assists, but as long as your team is victorious then why complain? You’ll run into trouble with this class if you try to get into the action or an enemy gets the sneak on you so stay back and remain aware of your surroundings.
Duelist: I personally haven’t played this class, but a friend of mine has and he told me a lot about it. This is your Rogue class with duel weapons and quick attacks. A great character to surprise someone with a quick death. It certainly helps when you have an invisibility ability, as the player will be able to roam around, without attacking, as a blur to get behind someone or even escape death by the other team. Your best strategy with this class is probably to pick off stragglers in the group or lend back up for other players. A pack of Duelists is something you don’t want to take head on. You’ll end up running into trouble when an enforcer comes your way or the Archer gets you at range.
The mode that was playable today was essentially just a team deathmatch. First team to 75 kills or most kills within 15 minutes won the match. There will be other modes, but this is the only one released so far. While the game is PC exclusive, it can be used with a controller or the mouse/keyboard and since this is QuakeCon then of course I used the mouse/keyboard combo. Controls are kept simple with the need for very few buttons, mainly wasd for movement and the q, e, f, and c keys for abilities. Adrenaline is the shift key and ctrl is to put away your weapon to run. If you try to run away without putting the weapon up, you will fail because you are very slow while wielding a weapon. Every character has two attack buttons as well. For example the Tech Archer’ left mouse button is just a quick shot, but holding right mouse button down allows a zoomed and focused shot. Their abilities are pretty balanced and each one is used in unique situations. Timing is everything in this game aas a well timed ability can be the difference of maybe getting a kill to wiping out multiple people and still surviving. One of the developers said that sometimes it is better to survive than to die and get one kill. I noticed that the players who did the best had used this tactic to lure enemies away when surrounded. This leads me just my next subject, team cooperation. The best teams stuck in groups instead of being spread out and used their character’s strengths together to overcome any enemy or group of enemies. If you are alone and see a group traveling together, your best option will be to wait until one breaks off or run until you find some of your teammates.
The game has major potential and will likely feature multiple expansions and updates. You’ll get some personalization as well, but for this demo we all had stock characters. The extent of personalization and upgrades are unknown. I imagine there will be unique outfits or weapon variations coming over time. It has two factions playable now, but they’ve mentioned that there will be others coming into play at a later date and the obvious expansion of gameplay modes and maps are inevitable. I hope there is some sort of a story or at least a point to the fighting though. Personally I like when games, yes even multi-player games, give me a reason to kill the other team. I noticed the team selection wasn’t random, so I think you can pick a team and stick with them. Their character equivalents don’t seem to vary based on their teams which is nice. If you want to get your hands on this fantastic game then sign up for the beta today for your chance to play when it goes live next year.