Runs with scissors and other sharp objects.
The developer, BattleCry Studios, may not be commonly known, but they seek to change all that with their eponymous F2P game, Battlecry, coming to global beta in 2015. They took the popular team deathmatch concept, mixed it with zaniness like Team Fortress, yet made it focused on melee like Chivalry. The result is a highly stylized, wacky gore-fest sure to appeal to multiplayer lovers everywhere.
One of the most immediately noticeable characteristics is the art style. Everything is clearly cel-shaded, but the effect changes based on distance. Whereas objects closer to the camera exhibit a lot of detail and texture work, faraway items and scenery appear as flat objects with bold outlines. There’s almost a painterly feeling to the visuals, which is no surprise with the Dishonored visual director, Viktor Antonov, leading the art here.
Gameplay is frantic due to environment design and the close-up encounters. Players are equipped to continually run across the landscape, utilizing an evading double-jump and a sci-fi grappling hook to navigate quickly. Once up close, action devolves into swords and arrows flying until someone is beheaded or split in half, leaving a geyser of blood.
The current classes available were Enforcer, the tank who can turn his giant sword into a shield; the Duelist, who can go invisible and let loose a flurry of rapier swipes; and the Tech Archer, who uses arrows to snipe from afar. These each have unique abilities operating on a cooldown system as well as the ability to gain boosts and strength increases by accumulating adrenaline. And rather than make this one giant sausage-fest, certain classes are automatically male or female by default depending on which side you play on.
My short time with Battlecry was nutty, running about the battlefield as a Cossack Duelist, taking advantage of Royal Marines running around alone. Due to physical space limitations at the Bethesda booth, our game only held 16 players, but the full game actually supports 32 at a time. Seeing the juxtaposition of the graphics with the kooky animations and the pools of violently-hewn blood was definitely a unique experience.
Until the game finally releases, the developers will tease additional classes and factions to play on. Battlecry features a full ranking system replete with perks and character customization. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much talk about how the F2P nature of the game plays out, but more information should trickle in to make that picture clearer. In the meantime, this new IP for PC is definitely one to keep an eye on.